Saturday, December 31, 2005

thank you 2005

Its been a good year. I have to say, i'm more impressed with optimism than with any other concept this year. I've realized it's the guiding lite, anything else is just a waste of time, or something that should be acknowledged needs working on. I have no room for negativity anymore. I have time for my friends, people i like, people i love, and things i enjoy. I will also make time for things i may not enjoy right now, but hold promise for the future. All else is moldy gravy, totally unworthy of contemplation.

Have you ever been told you're Joshua? You're this guy that is so like this guy that its scary, even pathetic. You look so alike, minus eye color, its scary? And words, emails and voicemails alike, all the mails, are erily similar? Very strange. Life continues to weird us all out. Thats never gonna stop, until we're old and we're saying "hef fun" with our rusty coils we try to pass off to our grandchildren as slinkys.

Yes, 2005 was a learning experience. No doubt 2006 will be busier, crazier, scarier, and more enviogorating than the last. This is because i've embraced confidence and optimism. And because things have turned my way. For all the ways things have turned i am thankful for. If i have one brutally obvious thing i need to work on is to be more selfless, and less self absorbed. I care for others, but rarely do i take part in selfless acts. Even for selfish reasons (ie, to be more selfless) i think they should be done. If i were to make a nwr it would be that. I should, make the time to help others not convinced of the benifits of optimism. Drama is so unnecessary with friends, be and let be, don't let silly preconceptions and fantasy play a part in reality, when reality is all that should be necessary. Blah blah, merry fuckin xmas, happy new year, and if you're faced with a question, the answer that best suits the "why the hell not" response, is most likely the scariest but right choice. Go for it, theres really nothing to lose.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

all kinds of unpredictablity

The past few days has run the gamut of all possibible emotions and situations... well not quite, but a lot has gone on. I'll start with right now, and work backwards as far as i can.

Today, i am 28. Nothing new here cause i've been saying i'm 28 for a while. But i am 28, my 5th seventh of my life is beginning. I feel it too, i'm not young anymore, and people that are under 24 or 25 seem noticably young.

Helped move a friend yesterday into an apartment that broke up for sad reasons. Half the stuff had to be sluffed off into the corner as the person had yet to come pick it up, and may not... moving someones personal effects when you don't if they know you're doing it is weird.

Christmas night out at the local bars is a lot of fun. Waiting in line to get into a bar on christmas night is fun. Staying up till 4 in the morn on christmas night is fun. It was also quite warranted, and not too insane. Saw lots of folks, had some family accompanyment, and the general glow throughout the establishment with all the serenity and issues of all the people was nice and heartwarming.

My grandmother passed away on christmas eve. She had been fighting and gradually getting worse all week. She was 92. At first the timing seemed tragic but the more we realized, the more we thought and hoped that perhaps she knew the timing, and did it for everyone's well being. She didn't want us to worry during christmas dinner. She was an amazing woman and will be greatly missed, but i believe it was her time and that she is happier now.

So now? Its my bday and i'm going to do whatever the hell i feel like doing. Some of which involves buying stuff and eating and drinking. Ok, thats basically all i'm going to do... mabye a little yoga first to limber up to the challenge.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

holiday cheer

My holiday has begun, i have little to say but much to do and think about. My birthday is coming up, and i've got a list a mile long of things i'd like to accomplish next week. I've tried to organize it, i hope i'm realistic.
persimmon
In the meantime, if you've never had a persimmon, get your ass to boushy's and pick one up. They're 1.50, and pretty cool. I'm waiting for the one it the pic to get all mushy, apparently then it'll be good. And if it isn't, the sensation you get from biting into an unripen one is so unique you have to try it at least once.... bitter bitter bitter. The flesh is so tasty, like a peachy mango, but your lips will pucker like crazy!!! I had a salty pistachio to cure it, but there are probably better cures. O what a feeling.

I hope you all have a merry holiday and don't let crap like not buying enough xmas crap bum you out. I've decided it just ain't worth it this year, selfish yes, but nobody thats worth anything would wish the bummering on you... i certainly wouldn't.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

decisions decisions

almond butter extravanganza
It has been a brain-searing week. Everything is super, great, and scary as all hell. There is uncertainty in ever facet of my future, and its all been chosen by me, and i couldn't be happier. Only when greeted with a challenge, and facing it, can one truly have reason for such confidence. Bah, life is a test, its all risk, and nothing is gained without giving up at least a little bit of comfort.

Have said all that crap, looks like i'm voluntarily switching jobs to regain some spark. No more money, lots more hours, and tons more uncertainty... all for the sake of polyvalency (i did borrow this word from a friend).

All i've been doing is thinking, drinking, cooking (click on the pic to get the deets, not feeling too redundant right now), and vegging. Its been a great week. Now next week, i must start xmas shopping, in all of my *ings that i've been doing, i've also been incredibly selfish. Well duh? This is something i'll have to work on. Yes, indeed.

Monday, December 12, 2005

uberhectic

Life has been hectic. This has been perhaps the most fully featured 2 weeks of my life. In the following 4 categories i will rate the amount of activity - a relative scale is used, relative to previous life developments:

Home life: 70%
Love life: 85%
Cooking life: 54%
Work life: 90%

This is all i can say. My prediction for these numbers 4 weeks from now...??

Home life: 30%
Love life: 85%
Cooking life: 75%
Work life: ... this one, i just can't answer right now. I'll know more on friday.

Is this all to subtle? Probably... only so many details can come out at a time, and i guess now is that time for no details at all... how about this. I've got 50 or so pages left in Rohinton Mistry's "A fine balance" and i plan on lying in bed right now and finishing it. I'm exhasted, and this will be the earliest i've gone to bed in months probably. Phew.

O, and put some chestnuts in your tomato based pased sauce. Roast them first of course, then add em. They're an excellent meat substitute/replacement. Just don't add to much other jazz, except perhaps some mushrooms and cream... ya, rose that bitch up. Damn, thats what i forgot. Next time.
more pasta and chestnuts

Wednesday, December 7, 2005

note to self

If a door stop needs installing, don't wait, install now!!!

Holes that were once holes that get fixed, but then become holes again, aren't like seasons, or memories, or other things that go away and come back. They don't create a feeling of warmth, and comfort. They don't make you feel that life is worth living, and all the bad times were just a test and penance for the good times, which are the majority. O no, not at all... reoccuring holes are nothing like that.

What reoccuring holes do, is make you realize you have prioritization issues. They teach you that once a wall is damaged, it will never be the same again. Like the battered fruit that is our brain matter and conciousness, we struggle to understand our place and our surroundings, and the reoccuring hole makes us realize how little we've progressed. The reoccuring hole symbolizes all that is wrong with our society, and teaches us nothing of how to advance further.

Ok, i ramble, but DAMN IT, I'M PISSED!!!!! Now i have to try to patch it again, reputty, repaint, yada yada. I moved my bed too so i'll be staring at it every night before i go to bed. Silly, silly me.

Monday, December 5, 2005

whoa


Its been a *busy* week and a bit. I made my house look even more ghetto by stringing up some old school xmas lights outside. I did however finally take the tape off the front windows, it helped the ghettoness, but i was getting sick of looking at it. I had some panel work done, yadayada, this is the first time i've sat down at my desk in my new location and do nothing but play poker and drink a beer. I'm also eating corn chips and learning of proscuitto (including how to spell it!!!).

As for all that lustation mumbo jumbo, lets just say life never turns out the way you expect it, and lust can be redirected just as easy as it can run away screaming and shouting. And sometimes, it might even come back to you...

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

heed fastingly

A friend of mine is fasting for 12 days. Nothing but water, maple syrup, lemon juice, and cayenne for 12 days. I think my body is in need of a cleansing, and it could also use the break from all the unhealthy crap i'm feeding it. As well, i'd do more yoga (read - some yoga), and wouldn't need an excuse to not run. I don't like the idea of not eating for 12 (i might just do 10) days, but what the hell. I could then regain focus and plan the coming winter, holidays, reno's, lustations, etc.. Speaking of which, i appreciate jessrawks comment, and i totally agree. Whilst i believe it, unfortunately, i've never initially had reciprocation based lust/infatuation ever!!! Bah, its gotta start somewhere i guess, what better place than here, what better time than now. Ooopps, sorry chemario, my lyricist/marketeer are the same person.

Monday, November 28, 2005

painted busy household

So the painting, at least what is currently necessary, is done. The front, the burnt pumpkin, worked out super kickassedly. My bedroom, while bright orangy/yellow del sol, is good. The bathroom, smurf blue, is ok. Its all still quite ghetto, but looking less n less every day i'm here. Which, officially, this is my first full one. So i'm in good shape. Stuff is everywhere waiting for shelves to be built, and organization to occur, but it will, all in good time. I can't wait to rip the crap out of the floors and see whats going on underneath... can't sand till the spring, but at least i could make an inch or two of head room and walk on 4$ ghetto runner rugs from crappy tire for the winter.

In other news, what do people think of purely physical infatuation? When you see something or somebody that you just have a total desire for, but for little reason other than physical traits and mannerisms? The little dialogue that has taken place has been well scripted and predictable and little judge to base any real feelings on... is this a good thing or a bad thing? Is this feromonal, or is it fantasy? Worthy of consideration or best left to dream about? Is there any way to bridge the gap when the scripted dialogue is at least set in clay... that clay's pretty hard too. Straying from the script might arouse suspicion from the director... but i suppose the worst case is you'll be thrown out of the play, and your reputation, albeit in a smallish circle, will be forever tarnished. But i guess your resume will still expand. I'm willing to learn the hard way either way, but if anyone has opinions, let me know, i'll let you know what the director does if i do anything diddly in the decending dreary days.

Friday, November 25, 2005

tinted primer?

So remember kids, before you decide a clean slate is best for your walls, you should ask them, "is there a primer you would prefer for your new look?". This, is very important. I did not ask them, and just dumped maximum hide all over em before choosing the colours. Not smart.

My new front living room decided on burnt pumpkin. One of the initiates at the depot told me it likes a tinted primer, ie another gallon of paint that has a little hint of the color in it. I didn't ask my walls, they didn't offer up the suggestion... perhaps its because my home, with all the home depot propaganda spread throughout, has not been fully converted. Nor have I.

My other 2 rooms didn't mention tinted primers either, but the initiate told me the colours i chose for those rooms liked a tinted primer too. She disapproved of my not wanting to use them there, but i took the risk. My walls are not complaining.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

there was frying pans in my bed when i went to it at 8am

girl on crutch drawing on wallSo i had little gathering at my house yesterday, a party if you will. It was, i think, a pretty good success. As i said, when i went to bed there were frying pans and my strainer buried underneath my sheets. I guess someones idea of a 'prank'. I appreciated it.

The night started off pretty slowly, as expected. Folks started meandering there way in round 9 or so, and in real numbers round 11. At one point you couldn't move at all on the main level, and for about 30 minutets straight i was filling pitchers of beer, emptying pitchers, and filling more. It was rare that a pitcher made it to the fridge.

All sorts of people showed up, quite a few that were an unexpected surprise. Early in the night i gave a friend of mine permission to identify where the beer was by writing on the wall. This eventually led to pretty much every wall in the downstairs getting written on. I welcomed it, and the place looks great. Of course, i am planning on dumping massive amounts of primer throughout the entire space. Otherwise, i might be a little ticked.
this makes little sense to me
A poker game started up round 2 or 3, i joined in round 5 or 6 or so. It was a good game. While i was still mingling around i heard rumour there was a bully at the table that was pissing people off. That changed as soon as i sat down, i didn't let anybody fuck around... i'm kindof a nazi at the table sometimes, and last nite was no different. I think the game ended round 8 or so, but its a little blurry. I know the sun was way up though, thats for sure.

A good mix of folks were there. An old friend from high school whom i hadn't seen in 5 or 6 years was there. Some strippers. Bartenders that work at a strip club. Artists. Degenerates. Next door neighbours. One guy from the band accross the street. Friend from work. Friends from various bars. And no police. Which was good. The one large and 2 small kegs were polished, didn't crack the 3rd small, but did crack my reserve 24... that was around 6 or so. I'm glad i bought it, otherwise the final keg probably woulda gotten cracked, and most of it would of been wasted.

I made some appetizers that were well recieved. Some cream cheese rolls, some sugary almonds, some red pepper dip, and some guacamole... the almonds were well recieved, all of them went except the ones that were spilled on the floor. Where there are quit a few of... i should probably clean those up soon. Nobody really knew what was in the red pepper dip, but most people said it was ok. Needed more definition i was told, good constructive critism for sure. The guac was ok, but needed more salt. I finished the rest off today... but i'm still hungry. I didn't make some meatballs, bacon water chestnut wraps nor the pastry thingy. Mabye i should make something now... sooo tired though. I wish my tv was still upstairs, it could use some watching.

i think you should fold

So ya, super time. I am, of course, quite ruff today, but this is to be expected. I smoked a ton of cigarettes too, all throughout the place. I lost count round 5, so i'm gonna go with 12. Thats the greatest/worst single day performance i've had since i "quit a little". O well, my throat's paying for it today. Not as much as i would have thought tho... hmmm.

So now, i have a week off work. I'm gonna paint, and do some reno's and generally take it easy. In my seratonin depleted state i'm debating tearing up the shite floor in the kitchen downstairs... its probably a LOT more work than i'm prepared for, but i might anyways. But definitely paint, thats for sure. O ya.

Now... what to do. I'm kinda bored, not tired enuf to sleep (got up round 5), hungry but lazy, and the tv's downstairs. I'm done my blogging and my photo uploading. Hmm... i don't feel like reading. Mabye take a walk? Go for a beer? Ugg... no. A walk isn't a bad idea. Then i'd have to put some more clothes on though. Why do things have to be so difficult!!!

Friday, November 18, 2005

harumph

Question #1: Did you ever fight for anything?
Did you ever go after something you wanted, something you wanted so bad you could smell it? Something you dreamt about, something you saw and felt all the time but didn't have?
How about passing up on something because of something you could fight for, but probably won't?
I think its time to fight for something.
For no reason other than the fact you don't have an obvious answer to question #1.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

the bathroom is done (mostly)

bathroom renovation 1

So the bathroom is done. Phew. The tile is done, the epoxy grout is on, the botches are painted over. I missed one chunk of grout between a couple key tiles and i'm pissed. I had to use 4 tubs of epoxy grout at 25 bux a piece, and possibly might need to get one more just to fix this little issue... i'm sure i can find a cheaper/smaller replacement.

bathroom renovation 3

I guess i'm pleased with the results. I had to fix my toilet hose as it managed to develop a leak during the big toilet move. I also replaced the toilet seat with one thats a little better suited to the slope of the floor, now when unfamiliar guys go in to pee you don't hear a SLAM 5 seconds after.

I'm a little skeptical about how i refasten the counter... it just had two massive screws on either side. I put those in, but one of em stripped and its replacement is a pinch smaller. Now leaning in and around the counter produces a creaking sound i normally associate with nails... hmmm. It may not last. That and the front of it was and is an inch or two off the ground. I need to shim it better.

bathroom renovation 4

Thats it i guess. Ya, i'm pleased with it all, i'm looking forward to my next tiling project, perhaps some of the floor downstairs. Now i'm occupied with weekend shindig preparation. I'm finally getting around to having a housewarming, full duplex party. Then i'm off work next week. Life is hectic right now but its about to settle into a nice bout of debauchery, music, sleeping in, and painting. Oh ya.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

mini road trip

panorama
My and my bro headed off to montreal yesterday for a much needed escape and road trip. It was planned months in advance when we decided we should get the pump out of town and see nine inch nails during their tour. We were not disappointed.
trent jumping
The show was kick ass, like really kick ass for a large venue show. Death from above and queens of the stone age openned, both were good. But nin blew the place apart... which is impressive cause the bell center is a big impersonable place.

It was a good mixed crowd, people like us and older, who were fans from the early beginnings, and new fans, young folk, who were just as appreciative. Trent played all the old fav's, did "something i can never have" which was kick ass, played burn, suck, and a bunch of stuff off the new album. All was well recieved, that guy can still perform super amazingly. I'd go see him again in a heartbeat.

graffiti
I was up earlier than the rest this morn so took the opportunity to tour around town, as i've never really done that before. I really should head to montreal more often considering how close it is. Its got lots to offer, lots to see, and lots to learn from. Most of which, i've no clue about but i'm sure i'd learn bits and pieces with regularily scheduled visits.

Ok thats it for now. My cousins coming over to show me how to use this epoxy grout stuff. Luck be with me please!!!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2005

alexander the grout

So i've been tiling manically all week. Started laying actual tiles on sunday, my cousin came over on monday to help out, and finished off the shower today. Phew. I grouted the first half too so i can replace my toilet and pee upstairs when i put it back, hopefully tomorrow... phew, i'm tired. I'll post some pics when all is said and done. It looks pretty good at first glance, just don't get close, don't touch it, and don't pour water on it. My cousin tells me i should use epoxy grout round the shower as regular grout just won't last... i tend to believe him. We'll see what actually happens. Epoxy grout is a lot more expensive and a bitch to apply so hopefully he'll help me. Thats it. Yes, pics next post for sure.

Saturday, November 5, 2005

ging can sing

crispy beef
Today was a day of recovery, home renovation, and mystery chinese food. It took well over 5 minues to order a 16, a 25, and a 63 from ging sing restaurant in ottawa. Never eaten there, but its the only chinese flyer in the house. I thought, what the hell. #63 is szechwan style crispy beef. Half their menu has red items with a star, but nowhere does it explain what it means. #63 is red with a star. This beef is basically like beef chips. They taste like kfc too, definitely have one of the kernels secret indredients in em. I don't know what to think about them, but i'm munching on them right now.

Thats all i've to say i guess. I'm being totally lame tonite, its 11:30 on a saturday and i'm still at home with no intentions of going out. My washroom is out of commission thanks to tiling, so i have to go downstairs and outside to pee/poo. Thats kindof a bummer. I need to make a home depot trip in a big bad way. Responsibility speeds me.


Ok, i just ate the last beef chip. Uggg... i don't think i'll get those again, but who knows, i could see myself jonezing for them at some point in the future.

if i could, i'd get lost tonite

joel and dad
Saw joel plaskett and pa perform at capital music hall. His pa being there was definitely a welcome surprise. Pegged from the beginning, his father ripped and tore the plaskettesque guitar solos throughout most of joel's 10 or so numbers. I don't know why, but i think joel is amazing now, so original, he seems to carry this impression that if nobody was in the crowd he'd be performing the exact same way. The guy loves music, loves playing his music, and while i'm sure he adores the attention, that ain't why he does it. And wholly crap, he just keeps getting skinnier.



What else... katheleen edwards was the headliner. I didn't stay for all that. I was with 2 friends so they were cool, i just had to get outta the tight quarters, the beer-getting-and-washroom-going-unfriendly surroundings. Damn i hate capital music hall for that. Unless you're next to the bar or can, its kinda unpleasant. You have to cop eight or nine feels unintentiallly just to get outta the place. Its horribly laid out, and if 900 is capacity, its too much. Great for a rock show though, but this wadn't no rock show. Ie i saw ministry there, and motorhead, and for both, it was perfect as you get a 100% greater people density towards the stage because of all the well intentioned pushing and shoving.

The rest of my nite was of course super. Fox for drinks with locals, then with girls... i was playing darts, eyeing friends on the pool table, and deking into and out of the main bar waiting for them. The folks on the pool table were like "stop acting like you've got something better to do". And then 2 girls arrived. And then all that was answered. Aloha later, hello goodbye, good luck mr. chavez, andre the giant has a posse, and i don't feel too good today. But i must tile. And tile i will.

Thursday, November 3, 2005

my maple

my tree
This is my maple tree. It sits on my front lawn. I've been watching it patiently for weeks waiting for its green leaves to turn some sorta different color. I woke up yesterday to this... whoa. I'm very happy for this, this bright vibrant, happy changing tree.


Minor work has begun downstairs. I did some floor mopping, some drainage pipe mapping, paint peeling, and smell searching tonite. I can't figure out this smell. At first glance it seems like its just must coming from the basement. But then i spend 5 min in the basement and come up and there it is again, in the kichen. Its definitely in the kitchen, i'm hoping it was residual dog pee on the floor and the mopping will ease it. I'm skeptical. It could be sewer gas coming from the sink, but i don't think so, its not that nasty nor localized... hmmm. The only thing i thought was the floor, so i'll have to wait and see. Any suggestions??

Tuesday, November 1, 2005

all mine

My house, for the next month, is all mine. My tenants left yesterday, and both downtroden floors are mine!!! The main level though, is fraught with issues. I'm going to be a busy camper... lets see, where to begin:
- plaster seems to be falling off the walls in spots
- holes in floor of main living room
- possible mold behind paint in back bedroom
- grody but functional bathroom
- light switches in the weirdest of places
- no shoe molding anywhere - in the front bedroom i may need 2 inch mouldings to cover massive gaps
- practically missing walls behind fridge n stove
- all the floors are really gross
- the fridge is loud
- random water drain pipe sticking up 2 feet above the floor in strange place
- strange smell, could be mildew, could be dog, airing it out tonite and put the dehumidifier on
- all the windows are shite (but i knew that)
- all outlets are at crotch height
- yadayada...

I really shoulda known all this, but i didn't do a thorough inspection of that unit when i purchased it. O well, serves me right, and i wouldn't of done anything differently. I'm just a little overwhelmed now. I've got 3 weeks to get my pad in shape for moving, have a party, then paint and get downstairs in shape for me to live there. And i'm tired already... but excited!!! But tired... o ya.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

*zombie scowl*

so much to say, but so little to come out. Is this desire? Is this desire lame? I think i know what its a product of, this shite is bad for the blog. But its great for overexposing pointless leg photos.

feet and legs

Friday, October 28, 2005

nerestin ightn

As usual, the night started off less than spectacular, but different. Dinner for a friends birthday. I realized i needed to leave the fox round 12:30 when that spark of emotion cleaned my insides when i got the brush off for a game lost. Not sure why i'm sensitive about that, but i am. I need to grow a bit to be able to take a loss, and a little rub in, in stride.

Regardless, all got much better after that. When you're hugging 2 beautiful girls within 2 minutes of walking into your fav friday night hangout, things are going spectacularily well and you'd be more than happy to end the night just like that. But for me there was more in store. Not a lot, but some stuff... 3 ladies, one whom introduced herself as more of a puma than a cougar, solicited ME for conversation/answers/whatever. Wow. This so rarely happens, but really needs to more often. I'm a shy dude but for the number of times i've initiated contact, only a tenth of the time has it happenned to me. Anyways, kate, lasha, and brenda, all had guesses throughout the night as to my age, best bests were 23 or 27. The little tap tap on my shoulder at 2:15 always feels good, when it comes from an older woman feigning interest makes the whole week complete. Ahhh.... anyways a good laugh was had, and they made my night.

I also handed out a few flyers for a party that will happen at a house that i live in 3 weeks. I missed a few folks, but theres always the next 2 fridays.

And now, its too late to think, but check this costume out, magnifique!!!! The girl on the left is very hot in a semi-nasty way, could be the lipstick, but i love the lipstick... hmmmm. Ya, i guess i do love the lipstick. Not sure why that is, but its hot.
hunter s. thompson on halloween

Thursday, October 27, 2005

halloweenish

Its thursday before halloween weekend. Can you believe the concept of a halloween weekend? I guess its been formulated in my, and others minds, because a weekend is the only time we can go out and 'have a good time' without the consequences of a 9-5 getting in the way. If non-children, or non-having-children people want to 'celebrate' halloween, when to do so? On the weekend preceding it of course! All this is bloody obvious, but silly in a way.

I really don't care for halloween. I was never an actor, always a horrible liar, and i never had the urge to be anyone else. Why would i want to dress up as anyone else? Then i come back to the fact that when you've got a good costume, and are surrounded with others making believe, it is damn fun to act like someone else or at the very least, look like someone else.... agg. I think halloween is my most cynical time of year. And xmas. But more so halloween, i just want it to end. Valentine's day can be pretty cynical too, but its always semi-hopeful/melancholy, and definitely revealing and telling and i can learn something about myself and others. For some reason i shut my mind down during this time. Must be trauma. Damn deja vu. I've said all this before... (scanning old entries). Ok not here, we're good. Please phycoanalyze away.

Computer, not yet back, but problem found by mad scientist looking computer fixer dude with a wedding ring. Good for him, i hope he can fix my problem.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

mid week blahhh

Not much going on here. Biding my time till other stuff comes up like:
- halloween comes and i either do something fun and exciting or i dress up in my own skin
- my tenants move out, should be on sunday
- do a bunch of reno's
- have my whole house party next month
- roast leftover tomatos

I did forget to mention that i did try out the sweet potato recipe again. And... well... i just don't think sweet potatos are well suited for gnocchi, i think they've too much gluten or something, they were way to constricted, didn't roll well, and still had a too firm texture. Taste was ok, but texture was over the top, even with ap flour. I think i'll go back and try the original gnocchi again with russet's or yukon golds just to make sure i'm not crazy.

What else... my computers in the shop again. I'm not convinced anymore that it is a hardware problem, but i've gotta try. The dude thats doing the testing is pretty bright, very geek like, and seems genuinely committed to finding the problem, whether it's his or not. This is good. The bad news is they moved into a location next to kfc on merivale and i have to smell it and be tempted by it everytime i go. Whats the deal with fast food smells? So overpowering, so gross, yet so tempting... mmm big crunch. I haven't had a big crunch in 5 years and i still think i love them. Probably cause they taste awesome, but is it really food??? Is it? I don't know anymore. Theres this pro fat/cholesterol dude out there that seems to have some interesting opinions. I don't know what to make of it but one thing did ring a bell - when i eat food, which is normally lo in protein and high in carbs, i get tired. A big plate of veggie pasta? Tired. O ya. Might have some correlation, i always thought you were supposed to feel tired after food... perhaps not.

Ok thats it. Now what to do with the rest of my night with no windows xp? Linux poker? Naww... i think i'll eat some food and play my guitar. Theres this contest where dude's like Tom Waits are judging for the best songwriting/song. I might enter if i can ever get around to recording something i like. Of course i have no processing capability here, but lo tech is good right? One of these days i'll get an mbox and start my rockstar career, but that day has yet to arrive.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

no saterplay

I've got lots to do this weekend, and most of it to be done today. Luckily most of it will be fun and rewarding... stuff like painting one of my hot water rads, o ya. Oh that reminds me, i should shut it off... yep, its a whole action packed day round my household. I might even get to fix a storm window whose prong has recently broken off. Oh ya. But in seriousness, i got nothin else to do except be lazy, so this suits me fine.

It was long week that is now over, which is good, but i'm faced with an even longer weekend. I'm not complaining, but whoa, i am a little overwhelmed. For the moment, its pre-noon on saturday, and i think i'll drink some coffee and surf the internet, mabye get a thing or two done.

By the way, broken social scene on thursday was kickass, but was there any doubt. Feist was there and did half the numbers. They've got this other new girl too who was angelic in presentation. Ya, it was a good time, although capital when sold out for non rock shows kinda blows. Its bss so theres no tuff guys which is good, you get that "o sorry man", and "can you just toss this beer on the bar for me? thanks man" kindof cheerful guy banter. I guess the girls are fine too, but they just squeeze in wherever they want with no (and rightfully) fear of recourse. I'm just getting old i guess.
kevin givin it up

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

bruised and battered

First, today's 3 fortunes:

You are kind-hearted and hospitable,
cheerful and well-liked.

The best prophet of the future is the past.

People find it difficult to resist your
persuasive manner.


Anyways in a nutshell:
  • My main computer is in the shop for 24 or 48 hours which is now about a week. Its annoying, no pictures, i'm sad.

  • I went skateboarding to an actual skatepark on sunday with a buddy. It was super kickass, my shoulder flew out of its socket once, i chest planted and bruised a rib, and i threw the side of my back out. All, totally worth it.

  • I had a very very nice night last nite

  • I played awsome darts today, 64 average, best all season

  • I really want to play a poker game but getting a client on this linux box is a lot more annoying than i thought it would be


  • Ok, thats all i have to say, its just not the same without being able to put up and screw with pictures i desperately want to show!!! Hopefully in the next few days that'll all be figured out. Thursday should be super kick ass, broken social scene at capital, the last time they played there i just loved it, it blew me away. Now i've seen them once since then, they've got more stuff, more memories, more gaul, and hopefully equal style, it should be good.

    Saturday, October 15, 2005

    words that start with c

    - crying
    - crasstastic
    - copulation
    - corruption (of montreal police officers)
    - capitalism
    - corgan
    - code
    - caustic
    - cynthetic

    Friday, October 14, 2005

    in the beginning, there was nothing

    And then, we were. Now, its normal that we walk around with two arms, a head, two legs. This is who and what we are, as humans. There is nothing all that different, we are what we are. Thinking as a mind, as a conciousness, its rather absurd, we look incredibly comical. But after so long, and having all this in common with all around us, how could we spend time analyzing our absurb composition?

    I wonder if we were smaller, perhaps a tenth or so the size, would things taste as good? Assume we were composed in a very similar manner, but our toungues would be one tenth the size, one tenth the molecules, and perhaps, one tenth the taste power. Food would (or perhaps not) be all the same size, but our smaller tounges would not have the same potential to grasp the diversity of their delicatly formed molecular structures. Perhaps if we were ten times bigger, taste would have a whole order of magnitude more meaning to us. You'd have your cayenne spicy, and your wasabi spicy, plus another ten categories, all not requiring a trained toungue. Even a thirty foot youngster could decipher the difference, but still realize they hated it all, and regret turning 18 and having missed out on so much kick.

    I think its safe to assume we are a very 'efficient' breed. We are this size because our surroundings, including our food, dictate so. I think its also safe to assume i have no point, i had to practically carry my brother home, i picked a caution light up off the street and stood it up straight, and i blew all this crap from my fingers and brain all in an effort to fight the entropy of the universe. But evolution, if obeying such laws, would've given us 3 legs, 4 arms, no thumbs, and a toungue that required external influence to actually taste anything (think acid/base). I can't fight change, but i can open a dialogue with it.

    ahem

    Its been a long busy week of eating turkey gumbo leftovers all frickin week, i'm so sick of it and think i've put on some weight. It was good, but way too much... works been busy, been playing far too much poker. Saw Elliott Brood on wednesday, it was awesome, hopefully some pics soon - i've been a little detached from this and my regular online life cause my computer is 'in the shop'. Some hyperthreading/processor/motherboard crap methinks, hopefully they don't say 'reinstall windows'. That would suck. Anyways, i can't upload pics right now, i'm using my router to write this as i speak. Yes.

    I wish it wasn't so gloomy outside. I sk8ed home last nite round 1am and had my first bail in years, hit a crack crossing somerset on percy, went flying, plump right into the pavement. For some reason the rain and wet ground made it feel a bit softer, at least i didn't chew my hands up. My right hip is sore and bruised and hurts when i run. Waa waa waa, bitch bitch bitch. Thats all i have to say. Friday is here, the best time of the week, friday eve is a 9to5ers utopian time to take on the world and feel as free as ever, and i do, and i will... for tonite anyways.

    Monday, October 10, 2005

    introspectacular!

    rollsSo i stayed in today. Cooked, cleaned (a bit), listened to tunez, played some tunez, screwed up what i was trying to bake, did some laundry, watched tv, computerized, and drank some wine. I tried baking some rolls - i screwed up the first batch, cause while i did the preferment step, i forgot to add it!! Then i said "flours cheap, lets just do another load and see which tastes better" (i talk to myself all the time, so i really did say that)... i'm pretty sure the preferment load does taste better, but for the 4+ hours of prep, its definitely a skippable step! I gotta figure out how to get a thinner crust too, mine were thick. And not smooth at all. But pretty tasty, warm bread is always tasty.

    I did do up the turkey broth too. Made a turkey gumbo with massive cajun spices, shrimp from the freezer, beans, golden beets (what the hell are those anyways!), and a whole wack load of other stuff. Damn kickin cayenne action knocked me in my ass, but is dang satisfying! Tons leftover, lunch and dinner for the week, woohoo!!!

    Do you think i'm cooking and enjoying cooking to escape from something else? In retrospect, this is a good possiblity... on 2nd thought I'm going to ignore that moment of insight in favour of putting the leftovers away and having another glass of wine.

    turkey

    Its been a busy, tiring, turkey filled weekend. Friday, was a large scaled card game, followed by late beers at a favorite local. Saturday, of course, was early morning tree removal followed by a friendsgiving turkey dinner, followed by more late beers with some westerners and high energy people - i had little energy, but managed to stay up late and have a blast. Yesterday, was chill. A quick painful run (out of practice), then family thanksgiving dinner, which was terrific and followed by... wait for it... more cards at my friends house. Once the 8th and 9th people showed up at 12:30, i decided to cut it off there and came home feeling fine.

    Today... is a day of relax. I've gota turkey carcass from saturday, and even if i don't do much with the broth, my place'll smell like turkey all day. I think it'll be a cooking/baking/cleaning/musical day, i'll get some physical and mental rest. I was shunned yesterday with the "nothings open today". Whatever, herbnspice was open, i gots my flour, i'm good to go. Its gonna be fun.

    Saturday, October 8, 2005

    no more tree

    fallen tree
    "The tree is gone nananana nananana NANA" (sung to the tune of "the heat is on").

    So the dudes came, and took care of business this morning. Over all i am quite pleased with the results, and am glad to have this nasty tree business done with. It took about 2 and half hours, no wires were broken or damage caused, they cleaned everything up, took care of another precarious limb, and told me to ensure i cover the exposed stump with some goo from canadian tire to ensure bugs to get in and kill the rest of it.

    I had the option to pay the tax, which i did, as i'm probably gonna save more on this by writing it off.trimmingall done!

    All in all, i'd call these dudes again for sure. I'm pretty sure their insurance on these jobs is quite high, and while on the surface you'd think i got fleeced as any bozo that could work a chainsaw could do it, experience matters, and these dudes had it.

    So now it's 11am, i'm up, its saturday, basically... i'm wide awake, its morning!!!!!! I'm gonna make some bread, do some house stuff, eat turkey, and enjoy my limb filled day thinking about how to get rid of the brush... mabye i'll post it on the freecycle site, who knows, someone may want it.

    Thursday, October 6, 2005

    woeful wood

    So apparently i'm gonna be getting bills from bell and possibly rogers for disconnect/reconnect charges that the tree caused. As well, the tree is apparently going to collapse any time which will destroy the fence at the back of the house that belongs to the business back there.

    My insurance company tells me it doesn't cover wind damage to trees, and unless damage has been done to property, theres nothing for them to do. Even if there was, i've got a 1K deductable... i've been told by one knowledgable folk, ya, a crane will be necessary. Will all this cost more than a grand? Probably... we'll wait and see. Ahh home ownership. Ugg.

    In the meantime i'm making some pita bread. Anna Karenina the movie is on tv... i watched the first bit, then recalled an earlier conversation, and my half assed half read of it in high school, and decided it best to read it.

    I've never watched anything rise. The dough isn't really rising, sorta just bulging out the sides. The waist or the hips of the dough not being like i'd imagined, but i'm eager to bake it anyways.

    Tuesday, October 4, 2005

    falling down

    fallen treeI know its hard to see, but trust me, theres a fallen tree here...

    I arrived home last night to good and bad news. The good news? A parcel from amazon sitting on my front step. A little strange that they didn't leave it at the post office, but i got it, so o well. Contained within was the larousse cooking book and a terry goodkind novel. The bad news? A note on my door from the city looking for the owner. The reason? A massive tree whose roots are on my property fell last thursday, and only now am i finding out about it. O well. The picture really doesn't do it justice, its a massive tree. Its now raising doubts about another massive tree that every windy night threatens to crush me in my sleep. They're all weeds too, manitoba maples, they sprout anywheres and grow like crazy... then in a big wind storm, no matter how healthy they are, they can fall over. Just like that.

    Anyways, hopefully my insurance will cover it's removal. Its currently resting on a bunch of telephone and cable wires. Bizarre it took me 4 full days to find out about it. My buddy in bc says if it's gonna cost more than a return plane ticket here he'll come out and lumberjack it himself... i think its too big, but this guy's pretty huge, arms the size of tree trunks they say...

    Sunday, October 2, 2005

    super sunday

    Had a great day. Up early, thanks to not going out last nite. Went out with a friend for parliment hill runner for a cause scouting, saw some cats, ate some food, watched a bridge move for a boat, wandered, bought some veggies, took some photos, all around super. Had a wicked awsome skate session at some school off percy near laurier, new pavement, great curb, kick ass. Played poker, got my ass kicked hard... final hand, my ak against a9, on the river, 9, doink!! This table does not treat me well, but it was fun. Skated home, also quite cool. Not sure what else to say, it was a splendid super day.

    Check this site out:
    http://www.collectionscanada.ca/archivianet/02011502_e.html
    I had no idea all these pics were online... see below. Searching for streets is the best, i did another search that yeilded a bank at bank and gladstone (i guess perhaps it's name origin) with a whole bunch of pics. Ottawa had a lot of grass back then.
    elgin & mclaren 1892
    This is bank and mclaren, 1892. Wow. Think the people living there ever would've thought some dude like me would drink excessively on that soil a few times a week over a hundred years later??

    Saturday, October 1, 2005

    live and learn

    As a follow up to last nites post, i still have so much to learn. Ribbons of knowledge pile on top of the other and are so thin it takes such a long time and so many lessons to gain any depth. Even if you 'don't feel the wine', its there, and dang it produces might head pains and body lethargy throughout the whole of the next day. Or perhaps i'm just used to the beer hangover, this is a whole other breed.

    Friday, September 30, 2005

    sweet potato gnocchi part 1

    sweet potato gnocchiSo i tried some sweet potato gnocchi. Pretty easy, cook some sweet potatos (i roasted although i've been told steaming is better), beat some flour in, knead, roll, cut, press, and boil. Pretty easy really. Perhaps as a product of thinking i've learned so much, thought there wouldn't be enuf gluten in sweet potatos to warrant omitting eggs. So i used a 50/50 semolina and all purpose flour mix. Not a good idea.

    sweet potato gnocchiThe gnocchi, while well formed, not sticky, and cooked well, were far too chewy, thanks to the semolina. Next time, all purpose, all the way. The one bright note was the sauce. After a summer long hiatus on the straight up can based tomato sauce i haven't forgotten anything, in fact have learned, and it was perfect. Simple, just onion, mushroom, and a roasted red pepper, oh and garlic and basil, dang, it was fab. The meal wasn't horrible though, edible for sure, and next time it should be super provided i can get the proper consistency with just ap flour.


    One additional note. I may or may not have mentioned to some of you that dry rieslings aren't that super? I finished the bottle, and by the end, it was tasting pretty good - probably a horrible mix for the meal, but it went down just fine.

    Thursday, September 29, 2005

    in no particular fortune

    Our first and last love... self-love.

    our love life will be happy and
    armonious


    Another 2 fortune pho day. The soop was super today. What is the significance of the last fortune being trimmed? Of course it is Your life, and it will be harmonious, but what if it isn't? If it were earlier, i'd spend some time reading crap into this. But its not. I'll take it for what it is, a bunch of words printed in some factory onto a little stick of paper meant to make people feel good. And they do.

    Perception is incredibly powerful. I've been accusing myself of becoming a hypochondriac of late, but i'd like to think me being such a rational person that it's impossible. Perhaps if i'd be more impressionable i would be... or mabye i am. Its too late to read anything into any of this.

    In other news, in case i didn't mention it, i now understand the casement window requirement. Its not for fire safety, its just general safety and liability. Having a door that leads from a second story dwelling to an unenclosed/unsafe space/area is bad. It should be replaced by a casement window that you can't fall out, but can still easily escape from. Makes sense... i'm planning on the deck, but it'll take some time. In the meantime i think a friend is moving in, he'll be 'cool' with the caveats at a slightly discounted rent, and all will be well in the world. There will be one relatively large party to celebrate the quick month of novemeber when the whole house is mine. O yes.

    Tuesday, September 27, 2005

    takes two to love

    Sometimes when i go for runs to pass the time i try to sing songs. Normally its the movie version of "when the tigers broke free" from the wall. Tonite it was "arnold lane" also from floyd but way older, i think syd sung it. I hardly remember the words... "arnold lane.... had a strange hobby. Collecting clothes, moonshine washing lineee. they suit him fine!... o arnold lane, its not the same, takes two to love.... two to love.... two to love... why can't you seeee!!!" I don't even know if those are right, and i'm certainly missing some.

    Anyway i got home from my dart game a little disgruntled and needed to blow off some steam. Instead of buying cigarettes and chain smoking while drinking beer, i decided to go for a nice long run instead. I started through the experimental farm, which is a little spooky and unnerving alone after ten on a weekday. Once i got to the otherside of the locks i was greeted by 3 or 4 different groups of young folk smoking cheeba which was a much more welcome waft than tobacco smoke woulda been. I'm guessing carleton students res's are right there.

    Somewhere between bank and pretoria i started trying to sing arnold lane. As the above lyrical mishaps are evidence of, i didn't get very far. That and i could hardly breath so singing just made running harder. I also made an obvious realization about balance. The reason i wanted a cigarette during crummy dart play was because i needed to regain my balance, with pleasure from a smoke. However, it would take balance away from health, making me feel shitty. To componsate for that, i might've decided to go for a run or do some yoga, but it's so less satisfying when you have to fight plugged lung recepticals. However, because i didn't want more imbalance, as i'm getting intolerant of it in my older age, i decide to forgo the smoke, go for the run, and hopefully feel all around better because of it. And i do/did.

    Finally, on the home stretch, i saw some girls with candles in one of the glebe parks. I smiled, although it woulda been nice to see what they were talking about. However any sweaty dude approaching girls after 11 in a glebe park may be viewed as suspicious, but next time its less suspicious i should seize the opportunity.

    Now, after shower, i'm sitting here eating feta cheese, peanuts, and yellow cherry tomatos to replinish some energy... i'm told you're supposed to eat after you run. Running was tough as i had a belly full of creamy pasta and lots of gas, the latter of which is now mostly dispersed along the canal. Sometimes when i decide to just eat whats in the house its really bad for you. I think i went through a cup or 2 of table cream in my sauce tonite, which is like 50 grams of fat or something. O well. I did learn something, you need a sharp cheese for alfredo. Brie? Not gonna cut it. I also am learning roasting veggies is the way to go for peppers and zucchini's.

    Coherent much? Apparently not me today. I apologize for the lack of continuty but congratulate you if you made it this far!!! As a reward, try the all pizza diet (even though its kinda cheating, dude had smoothys for breakfast and only ate 6 slices a day).

    Sunday, September 25, 2005

    coming home

    I attended my 5 year homecoming celebration at queen's u in kingston this past weekend. I wasn't quite sure what to expect, but i sure got my nostalgia on.

    richardson stadium

    I won't bore with all the details, but it was fun. I never had much 'spirit' while i was there, never even went out on homecoming weekend, so really didn't know what to do. Luckily the buddy i went up with did. As can be seen by the image above, we did the obligatory football game, and the halftime 'parade' around the field. This is where all the various graduating classes, from 1935 to 2000's gather in their group and walk around the track. All the students jump the fence and pile onto the field to bang their jackets to the ground in ceremonial fashion. The school's got lots of traditions, most of which are alien and strange to me.
    old dude
    After the game we basically bar hopped till the wee hours. Queens's pub, toucan, grizzly grill, brass, and finally aj's. This would have been a semi-typical friday while attending school, minus the football game and expensive appetizers and beer. Being back at all these places, the brass most of all, reminded me i'm getting older. Not like thats a big secret, but it was one of the things that really hit home. I kept looking at peoples grad classes on their jackets and saying "in 10 years, thats me". Or "in 20 years, i'm gonna look like that?!?!". It was all a little unsettling...

    The other thing that became incredibly clear is that when i was at school i didn't 'make the most of it'. Basically i had my head buried very deeply in a bag of weed, 99 cent movies, my first dedicated internet connection, and doing well at school. Its hard to have regrets because i had a great time and everything worked out, but i kinda feel like i should have *some* regrets. And i guess i do. If i had partied and gone nuts in my first year i probably wouldn't of had nearly the success i did have while i was there... but dang, there was a lot of fun to be had for first years, and i missed out on all of if basically because i was shy and had no balls. And really, this tradition continues today... it was kind of an eye opener.

    So i'll be back in another five years, thats the suggested schedule. We'll see if i've learned anything by then. Hopefully i will:
    - not have a bald spot
    - be in decent shape
    - go for things i want, and not waste opportunities

    Thursday, September 22, 2005

    simple salad

    Ok, so the ingredient of the week has to be: peanuts and/or peanut butter.

    I only had an hour or so to chill, decided salad was the best bet. Wanted to try a new dressing, couldn't find any decent peanut based dressings, and had a peanut craving (since the recent peanut butter soop). So i remembered an old recipe for a pasta with peanut butter sauce, but of course no quantities... i could've looked it up, but what fun is that??

    I put about 1/4 cup of smooth pb, some soy sauce, some honey, some red wine vinegar, some sesame oil, a bit of water, and a pinch of cayenne (not enuf to make a dif, perhaps more next time). I also added some garlic and ginger powder, again, not enuf to make a diff. Dang, it was good dressing (i'm gonna cut up some apples and carrots and finish it off as a dip tomorrow)... bought some spinach and sprouts at boushys on the way home... then i added "what i had lying around" (ha! i love reading that in recipes, you can learn so much about people by what they have 'lying around'... observe:) - a carrot, a shallot, some mushrooms, walnuts, pumpkin seeds (too salty but o well), almond slabs, a tomato, and some pepper. It was a damn good salad, and dang, i can eat a lot of salad. And i did.

    Other than that i played poker tonite and lost a whole bunch of money but had a good time with my friends. Some times i wonder why i bother, other times i know its cause its fun. This is only half of one of those times.

    Wednesday, September 21, 2005

    deglutenized

    I think i need to do some research into flour and bonding agents. I tried to make some sweet potato gnocchi tonite. Decided to try sans gluten with some gluten-free hempseed flour i had. Also tried my previous no-egg recipe... i'm sure any semi-educated cook could tell me this is doomed to fail. What is there in this mix that will hold the cooked potato/flour mixture together... NOTHING!!! I think you need gluten. Or eggs. I don't know what gluten is, but i should probably find out. The sweet potato, my fav food du jour, needs to be worked into one of my other favorite recipes, gnocchi. Homemade gnocchi, while time consuming and precarious, is incredible.

    Luckily i bought some storebought pasta this past weekend... fettucelle. Its basically fettucinni perhaps missing a mm or 2. Did my first tomato based sauce of the 'season' - today, being the last day of summer (o how i will miss they), couldn't be a better time to usher in the comfort canned tomato based sauce. Remember though, table cream (18% i think) is no substitute for whipping cream (35%). If you's be adding it to add that fattening flavourful kick, and you want to call someting "roseh", use the good shite will ya? Speaking of which, are there any cream substitutes that don't involve dairy? This has got me thinking i can alleviate recent tummy woes with a dietary change... why do i drink what is naturally intended for calfs anyways? Marketing? Culture? Mom? I'm old enough now, i should be able to figure out why i "drink milk, love life".

    And then afterwards in a nutshelll..... ate, watched family guy, friend came over, went to clocktower, played with plastascene(sp), watched strange creatures come to life, eyed strangers inquisically to no avail, walked a friend home through centertown ghettos (ya right!), played a game of pool, organized future dart meetings, learned that the mill restaurant has decent waiters but the prime rib's too expensive for them to know what it tastes like, and finally, spent the last pint of beer on a cab ride home after walking thru a pool of water in the entraceway hall.... phew. Its amazing how you can think so little happenned but have so much to blab about. I could say so much more, but will refrain for the time being. Nice people were met and talked too, for this and recent anti-shy actions i am grateful, it was a terrific day.

    Monday, September 19, 2005

    fortunate sweet potato

    "Your love life will be happy and
    harmonious."

    "In youth and beauty wisdom is rare."

    2 fortunes for lunchtime pho is great. Both arrrrrrrr so true - the latter ensures i be not too arrogant and self swabbin, and the former tells of the riches to plunder through a life nobly led. Arrrrr.

    sweet potato with feta/olive salad



    Eat your mighty sweet potatos like this, just don't miss the 1/2 juice of the lemon else you get the naughty scurvy.

    Recipe (not mine) is here.

    quite a show

    I was lucky enough attend the eagerly awaited sigur ros show last nite. Phenominal! I really should've written about it last nite like i said, but o well... hopefully i can capture some of the feeling.

    Showed up at the bronson centre much later than i originally wanted, about 6:50. The line was around the corner, and then some... hence, our seats were not the greatest. The venue was small, cozy, and hot. I sweated profusely through much of the show until the doors at the back were opened to allow some breeziness. A small price to pay.

    The opening act was some bizarro iclandic band (was it amilia or something?) that played a multitude of musical devices ranging from glasses to a saw. It was something to see, but only caught my attention for a few moments. My friend that accompanied me was more impressed with them than the main act... i shared no such feelings.

    red screen

    Sigur ros went on probably around 9. They had this white screen in front of the stage that produced this nifty shadowy effect, very dramatic. They opened with the first track of their new album, takk. It was amazing. I've only listened to the album since it came out last tuesday, but guess i've heard it enough to know where songs were coming from.

    bow

    The lead singer absolutely blew me away. This pic here is him playing his guitar, with, as he did for the majority of the show, a bow. His voice just went so deep into my soul. For the first little while before he started singing i was worried i'd ruin the experience for myself. I'm used to listening to these guys almost as part of a religous experience whilst i do yoga - its as close as i get these days days to a religous experience. I thought if it didn't pull through, or if it sounded different or worse, or worse of all, if i realized these folks are just a bunch of dudes, probably younger than myself, that the experience would be ruined. This was not the case. I of course did realize the final point, but i got over it as i experienced breathtaking results of what creative people are capable of, most notably having me well up during the opening track to () which was played half way through the set. I took a video of that to get some of the sound, it doesn't do it justice, and it *still* makes the goosebumps i had all nite return. Damn, it was incredible.

    The potential of this band is just ridiculous. They are just men and women of course, but they evoke such strong emotions in me. And purely from the sound, as i have no idea what any of the music is 'about' as i don't understand the lyrics. Perhaps it's easier for me to find meaning or purpose in the music if there is no painting with words, just of sounds by the vocals. The vocals are the most important part of this music too, sounds coming out of this guys gold plated lungs capable of making me (and perhaps others) cry. So irrational, so illogical, and i wouldn't change it for the world.

    birds

    The visual effects were also very nice. This final picture, while blurry and crappy, shows the 'birds'. It was just a light projection painting a scene of birds on a wire. They would slowly fly away, and slowly return again. This was the final pre-encore song they did, and after all was said and done all the birds flew away. It was breathtaking.

    I don't think i should ever try to look up the lyrics, or want to delve any more into these folks lives. I like it the way they are as demi-god producers of sound that can bring about emotions and feelings and moods that i am so grateful for yet feel is fragile.

    Blah blah blah, ok, i guess some of the feelings came back...

    post show beers

    Anyways, they played quite a bit off their new album, but lots of old stuff too. They came out for one encore song, and two encore bows. I was surprised by the crowd, early 20's at best... i was not surprised by the 30$ t-shirts that barely had anything on em. Seen this too many times to be disillusioned, also too blown away to care, and can easily excuse on record company or managerial greed.

    After the show we had drinks at the oak. 3 beers and a yag in about an hour, and really, all it did was take the edge off. O, and a few smokes (damnit, i don't care!!!). It was a great evening and i felt great all day today. I go see them every nite this week if they were in town, thats for damn sure.

    Friday, September 16, 2005

    sure seemed like so many anecdotes

    ... but i guess there wasn't that many. Everything always seems more monumental at 1:30 am when the music is loud, and you're surrounded by people losing one inhibition after the other.

    "If it was me, and i was out with you and your girlfriend, i'd be all over all of that". Or something like that. Ya right, i would be too. I was out with a friend, his gf, and a bunch of her friends as it was one of their bdays. The opportunity to go out with a bunch of anonymous hot girls is something you regret passing by, so you rarely do. However, game plans are a necessity, as are balls, and confidence, and really, personality is something you can probably leave at home. I didn't bring much except a snazzy shirt... what did i say - "or the death of me will lie in the mirrors that dress me"?? I gotta listen to myself more.

    takk
    Anyway, it was a fun nite, there was this ubersexy girl playing pool... wowy zowy, she was something else, but i've no idea what she's really like as she was a) dressed up a bit and b) intoxicated. For all i know shes ultra repressed and uptight and wears jogging pants to work (i seriously doubt the last one, but excuses are easier when paired with unattractive imagry).

    I woke up today, and stayed in bed till 11 or so, tossing and turning, trying to guage the hangover. Not too bad really. I then, of course, had to have a yoga bout with the new sigur ros album - the concert is tomorrow!!!!! Super kickass pigeon today by the way, mabye if i get bold at some point i'll start setting up my camera and taking pictures of myself, get all narcissistic or something (as if i'm not already).

    why

    Its 9:07, why am i not on my way to work? I ask you, the people, to tell me why. I am hungover, tired, and slightly annoyed, and really, don't give a shit if i'm late for work today. Lately, I normally don't leave the house before this time anyways, but the act of writing this shows my utter spite for showing up at my 'normal' time today. It was a late(r) nite of high drama at a 'friendly' cash game last nite. While at times quite nasty, it turned out to be lots of fun by the end of it, all shookup, but no one got hurt.

    So the answer really, is you, the people - it is for you that i am not at work. I'm writing, to tell you, the people, of these hard truths about my life that just couldn't wait until they were glossy and sugar coated as they would be if recounted tonite. I bid you all a fine friday.

    Tuesday, September 13, 2005

    hot semptember nites

    Huh? Ya, today/tonite was gorgeous. I went and watched the first seven eighths of hitchhikers guide to the galaxy at my buddys place after work while gorging on dominos pizza and chicken wings. They mocked my spontaneous selection of bacon, onion and chicken, but who's laughing now!!! It was pretty good.

    I then sk8ed over to a friends and then proceeded into a beatutiful stroll full of 2nd cups decaf earl gray. Saw the construction on the somerset canal foot bridge, man it's large!! Its 200 ft away from where i used to live on somerset, saw that place too, o how i miss that pad. Memories, memories. Quiet evenings like this playing my guitar, drinking beer and smoking my brains out watching the couples stroll by, and brooding. Those were spectacular times. I can still do it, but feel i need to be quieter, and not smoke my brains out anymore.

    After that i toured to my friends place, he was a little occupied, then on home, looking for places to tear up, but didn't really balls up to any. I finished reading some of my comments on another blog with a history all its own... i anticipate a few more hits to this (in comparison) incredibly boring account of one dude's currently quaint and incredibly satisfying existence. For the ESI's sake, i'll try to spice up my life. And since I have been meaning to use more tumeric...

    Monday, September 12, 2005

    peanut butter soup?

    I had a full evening.

    My day started unusually, especially for a monday. I was up before normal, and was at my desk at 9:07. This is about 30 minutues earlier than usual. Work went quite smoothly, and i was home round 6.

    I had many options. I decided, as with most mondays, to just follow my instincts. I had many things on my agenda:
    - dinner
    - excercise
    - social behaviour
    - house work
    - dart practice

    The last one is because my dart season starts tomorrow, and i haven't practiced at all in the past few months... anyways i'm happy to say, my focused mind (which of late, has been rare) came through in the clutch.

    I went for a relatively short run - after my horrible showing on saturday (barely lasted 17 minutes) i did a short run (which for me is about 30, from here, straight south on percy to the canal, to the little glebe park and through it, back to percy, and home). It was great. I guess my cold and respritory illness is waning. I got home and started to fry onions, red peppers and garlic as per this african peanut soop recipe. I've been meaning to try this recipe for a week or so, basically to prove that anything involving a can of diced tomatos as half the bulk is never good... i think i've been proven wrong.

    I had my shower, then finished off the dish. It was actually pretty good. I used chicken broth (sans msg) and cayenne instead of chili powder, but it was pretty good, very satisfying. Something about crunchy peanut butter, you can't go wrong. I'm still kinda shocked - i think improvements could be made too. More simmer time, slightly less tomatos, and some blending, would probably of made it super kick ass. It didn't need any salt either, most soops do, i guess the pb had enough.

    Anyways, after that... i did the dishes. Then.... i watched some tv. Then... i took out the recycle. Then... ok then i realized i had enuf time to paint the ceiling of my bathroom. So i did. It only took like 30 min. I was quite impressed.

    Ok, after that i got dressed (its hot today, after shower, just shorts, quite comfy), and sk8ed up to aloha to meet my buddy. Had a very nice stella, whilst listening to the empricals or something. Normally bands don't play on mondays as bimal normally does his dj thing, but this monday was different cus the band is going to china or something. Anyways, they were loungy and quite good.

    After that pint, off to the oak for some much needed dart practice. To my surprise 2 good regulars were already playing, and so i got some quality games in... saw a couple jump the 'fence' and dine and dash... Dave tracked em down, good for him!! Bunch of savages in this town...

    As i was paying my tab saw S and said hi. She was with her sis, post backstreet boys concert... ahhh girls. Guys like me are so silly. I don't even know why she's appealing, just stupid irrational chemistry i guess, but arggg!!!

    Sk8ed home wanting a cigarette REAL bad... if i had only bumped into dart folk outside but i was so streamlined i didn't think to look. Good thing, i'm sure i'd regret it in the morning. I wonder if i can do it though? And by do it, i mean, when i really want a smoke, thinking it'll add to my immediate enjoyment for the evening, can i? Will i be ok? They say a smoke or two a day is fine... hmmm. I'm not convinced, but i'll probably learn the hard way.

    Sunday, September 11, 2005

    white cowbell oklahoma

    At barrymores last nite to check out this band called white cowbell oklahoma. What an entertaining show.

    It started with 2 openers, the first of which didn't get on till frickin 10 or so. The main act probably didn't start till midnight. I tried in vain to be casual about my beer sipping, but of course, why would barrymores want you out at midnight? Hence, i was feeling quite fine when the band came out, making loud noise in the background while a scary dude in a state trooper outfit lamented about the horror and inappropriate behaviour we were in store for.

    The band itself was basically hillbilly rock n roll, not my scene really, they're a lot like big jeezus truck, whom i've seen many many times (normally at some friends of mine insistance, who ironically had no interest in last nites, much better show). I didn't care for the music really, but they did rock hard, and their stage antics were excellend.

    They had this girl get on stage for 3 or 4 different songs, in 3 or 4 outfits, and basically provide eye candy, which was much approeciated by the males in the audience. She was even topless for a few moments, which made the show cross the line between a rock show and a strip show. Luckily by that time there were lots of women in the audience (for some reason unknown to me), so guys like me still knew what side of the line we were on.

    The stage antics member (the guy that played the cowbell and did the state trooper thing) came out with a chainsaw and hacked a pumpkin to bits. That was pretty cool, it sprayed everywhere, i was back a ways so didn't get nastied.

    These guys have no shame - just check out 'cock rags' in their store on the site. After the show while perusing their merchandise one of the 4 guitarists came up and started chatting with me, which i thought was very cool. I guess his name was hollis, he's got a video on their site of drinking 24 beers (the last 6 or so, are actually JD, but who's counting). Nice guy, not at all mean or gross, articulate, very cool. I kinda wish i bought a t-shirt, as bands and websites are basically clothing me these days, but i didn't. Not sure if i'm comfortable wearing that nasty no-shame around on me to people that would know.

    Saturday, September 10, 2005

    casement windows

    door
    So now that my tenant is leaving, i need to decide how i'm going to procede with my home. I plan on probably renting out the upstairs portion of the house. One thing that was clear while buying, is that the house did not conform to ontarios fire retrofit code

    I have this list from a contracter listing what i need to do. On the second story (my current apartment) in the main bedroom at the back of the house, is a door. This is the only external light source of the room (as there is a window in it).

    The door leads to a 6x11 rooftop underwhich is the laundry room accessible from both units. Hence, i can hang out out there if i like on the roof. Now, the fire retrofit report i have says i either need to construct a pressure treated deck out there OR, install a casement window. It is not specific about where this casement window need be, only that it need be in the room. Doing a search for casement windows and fire retrofit reveals the need for a second means of egress in the ontario fire code.

    Do you think, for instance, removing that door and putting a casement window in its place would satisfy the code? Does that make any sense at all? Or installing a casement window on some other wall in the room - how is that going to make egress easier when theres a door right there?? I'm confused and obviously need to read this code very carefully to figure it out.

    In other news i had a nice induldgent free week to satisfy my cold, but it doesn't seem very satisfied... it feels gnarly in fact. I did induldge in a few drinks last nite, which kinda made it worse, but i blame the contact c.

    Wednesday, September 7, 2005

    phlegm

    I wouldn't think the word flem would be spelt phlegm. But it is. Here's a uk definition:

    Phlegm arises from stagnation of the body fluids. It can cause symptoms such as mucous in the Lungs, nodules on joints, kidney or gall stones and/or lumps under the skin. If it blocks the Heart orifices it can cause some forms of mental illness.

    Geez, i hope mine doesn't block the heart orifices. I guess i caught something in winnipeg and, while not too painful, has me operating well shy of 100%. As a friend pointed out it could be from the smoking... in part perhaps, my guess is airplane airbourne primitive lifeforms sneaking into my lungs or something. Where does it all come from? Stagnation of the bodily fluids? Laziness of the fluids perhaps? Lack of fluid motivation? Mabye they're just bored that they don't have to fight the constant smoking... no challenge, no ambition, nothing to work for. I guess i need to give them a purpose. I should go running.

    In other news, my tenants have told me they're leaving. This is big news for me. I figured i'd have my current apartment and tenants for at least a year or so... now i have to jump back on the reno train, and consider moving downstairs and renting my much brighter, and imo, nicer, apartment for some more cash. To do this, i need to do some renos. Serious ones... i'm gonna be a busy mofo over the next few months. Or mabye i'll just open up an illegal card room/brothel downstairs... the possiblities are endless.

    Monday, September 5, 2005

    labour intensive feelings

    Ahh, the long weekend is over. It was a good long weekend, although now i find i'm getting all sentimental for a variety of reasons...

    I was in winnipeg for a friends wedding. The wedding was great, all went as planned. I even got to do car decorations with my buddy with 30 min before the ceremony. Luckily there was a dollar store nearby and an affinity for tackiness amonst all involved.the carThe picture doesn't do it justice, we were quite proud, and we did get a few honks.

    As with most weddings, there was drinking involved. It was really quite a bender for me and my buddy. On friday nite we checked out winnipeg. It's pretty drab but we managed to find a club that we'd probably never go to were it in ottawa, but in winnipeg it was a goldmine. And we drank. The day of the wedding, hungover, we also drank. Sunday was mostly a right off spent briefly in the gym and pool, and mostly in bed. Then, we went to the happy couple's home, and drank some more. Big surprise. I was glad to get home, but still feel woozy.

    Some points of note:

    I smoked. Wedding nite it started, had 5 or so, then probably the same on sunday. I don't give two shits either, i wanted too, i enjoyed it, and thats that. I didn't smoke today, and didn't really want too... only minor temptation. We'll see if i can keep this up.

    I realized in the cab home from the airport today that i really do love ottawa as a city. I think its great, the people are mostly great, the sites are great, the places are great, hell our airport is pretty great. This is certainly my home, and probably will be for the rest of my life i think. Part of it is my personality and my social life with friends, but thats fine. I like being comfortable, feeling i have a place and that i belong somewhere, and i certainly feel that here. Compared to what i saw of winnipeg, we got it so dang good here.

    There was this beer store in winnipeg that was so drab and scary, and so representative of lower class, blue collar, alcoholic life. It was depressing and scary, but i was there buying beer in my nice shirt surrounded by flies, filth, smells, and a cigarette machine, and was as much a part of its rhythm as the rest. It was weird, and summarizes my reoccuring saddness about the misfortune and hardships in everyones lives.

    I finished the 6th book in the sword of truth series. The books always start slow, but once you're within 250 pages of the end, they pick up and get really good. I get extra emotional when i'm hungover, lacking seratonin or something as is usual with emotional exhibitions, and the book had me welling up waterworks for the entire last 50 pages. It reminded me of some burnt out sunday of my adolesence lacking emotional stability and crying openly at some corny made for tv movie i can't even remember anymore.

    And lastly, this is the time (day actually) of the year where summer starts fading away and cool winds approach. This day used to be so hard during public and high school, so reflective, so sentimental, so depressing. The future shouldn't be depressing, but looking to see another year of school was hard. Things are very different now, there is no school, but that feeling is still there. The future is very bright for me now, yet i feel gloom surrounding me. As an attempt to brighten my mood, I think i'll play some guitar on the front step and pretend i'm in grade 12, and for once, looking forward to a new school year....

    Friday, September 2, 2005

    and i'm off

    I leave for winnipeg in a half hour, friends coming to pick me up. It should be a good weekend, i hope my faithful reader(s) won't be too sad that i'm gone... mabye i'll hook up some internet whilst i'm up there to feed this thing.

    As a parting note, did you ever think you'd be happy to see gas at this price??
    not so expensive gas anymore
    I'm still not, but dang. A lot of crazy stuff is happenning in this world right now, for all i know getting on a plane to go to the pegger is a bad idea. I doubt it, but these things tend to sprout pretty fast. I hope they sort stuff out down there but i guess its too late to learn the lesson that building cities underwater is a bad idea. And guns, guns also, a bad, bad, idea.

    Wednesday, August 31, 2005

    not so tired

    Today started with stepping on a piece of glass. Just a tiny shard sitting on my carpet, burrowed into the heel of my foot. It really wasn't that bad, my soles are pretty tuff, it stopped bleeding pretty quick... i remember the fateful nite i broke a glass in there too, knowing one day i'd find the final shard in my foot. Today was that day.

    I got home from work, did some yoga, and ran like i've never ran before, to dows lake, locks, up to bank, hit echo drv., to pretoria, otherside of the canal, back to bank, then up to percy, then all the way up percy to arlington... phew. One hour, 5 min, longest for me ever. I'm gonna frickin sleep tonite. I had to get a good one in cause i'm off to winnipeg this weekend for a wedding, doubtful i'll be doing much running up there.

    Tuesday, August 30, 2005

    tired

    I got home from work quite tired. I cleaned previous nites pasta mess from kitchen, then decided to do some yoga for a little bit. I put on a sigur ros single, settled down, and passed out on the floor after 3 sun salutations and some leg lifts. Then i hit the couch and slept for 2 hours. I guess i was tired.

    Speaking of sigur ros, they kick ass and are coming to ottawa in 19 days or so. The site has a forum with a thread for ottawa folks here. Its gonna be quite strange at the bronson center and all, making it all the more surreal to have these icelandic angels in my own fair ottawa. I have my tickets... do you??

    Monday, August 29, 2005

    pea pasta of montreal

    So it was a full day.

    I woke up to check my email, realized i'd botched shite large at work, stressed, went to work, brought timbits, discovered the flaw and corrected, and still felt uneasy.

    Got home, decided it was the day to try pea pasta. So i did. Here's the dough:

    the pea pasta dough

    It worked out ok but i was WAY short on flour. Started with a cup each of all purpose and durum semolina, ended up adding probably another full cup of all purpose. Had to do the roll out, add flour, roll out, technique. Haven't had to do much of that since i switched to durum semolina as the half flour base. But today, absolutely necessary. And after all thats said and done, hows it hanging:

    drying pea pasta

    And final product:

    pea pasta

    It was quite appetizing but pretty damn heavy. Cooked too much too, shoulda tried freezing some... next time, in the cold long winter, once i remember to appreciate the goodness all a hot tomato based sauce has to offer, i will try the same pasta with that. Pesto may have been a bit much.

    Then, heavy tummied, i went to see of montreal at barrymores. It was... n't as what i was expecting, but it kinda was.

    of montreal 1 of montreal 2 of montreal keyboardist 3

    Based on my limited exposure, i assumed beaty happy go lucky indie pop. And thats pretty much what it was... during the show i had commentary to myself like crazy, less of it is here now. I did see a beer store girl... and a pretty hideous shirt on the lead singer, but i was wearing what he woulda called a pretty hideous shirt, so thats ok. They did play the one song of theirs i know well, bizare celebrations. It was cool. I guess i like climactic music, or at least was expecting that. Based on their loose roots with elephant 6 and neutral milk hotel, i expected more i guess... i guess i just love that style. There was no "in your heart there's a spark that just screams". Agg, pipe dreams. But it was good.

    Sunday, August 28, 2005

    tremendous sunday

    Today was a great sunday. A recently new friend of mine suggested "early" morning coffee. At the unheard of sunday hour of 9:50 or so, i left the house showered, and prepped with backpack. The coffee was a super time, i haven't been for "a coffee" with someone in ages.

    After that i planned to be market bound, with a swing by city hall to see if any pride events were on. It was still a little early.

    confederation park

    I hit up the market and picked up some veggies for dinner. The basil was plentiful, pesto it was to be. I had a few pine nuts at home, and picked up some walnuts from hartmans on the tour home. I then tourned by the middle eastern grocery on gladstone near my house, of course they had bulk walnuts... but it gave me an excuse to hit up some lemon pistachios and fresh greek feta.

    Whoa i got sidetracked. On the way back into centertown, the parade was in full swing. Heres a sneak peek:

    pride

    Ok, finally at home, friends arrived, poker tables were fixed, pesto was made, and poker was played. In the break between the 1st and 2nd game, this was eaten by me:

    pesto rigatoni

    The pesto was pretty good, but not spectacular. More garlic, less basil for sure. The rigatoni was a second choice for noodle - last weekend i made a whack of fettucine noodles, and froze half of em. They were not my best noodles, too eggy, sticky going into the freezer, and stickier coming out. Compression does not suit fresh noodles well, they clumped even more upon their warm freedom, and had to be disposed of. There was also some leeks n zucchini n chicken in there, it was pretty decent. I got the pesto recipe here.

    Ok, then i got to play guitar whilst the final game ended, sitting on the stoop, hearing the stones in the background... now i'm writing this. And then i go to bed, capping off a fabulous day. Tomorrow i see of montreal at barrymores, it should be a good time.

    Saturday, August 27, 2005

    miami vice

    My reflections of last night are much different now than they were last night. Its now 12:13 and i finished that last post around 3:45 i think. Much time has been wasted, my "weekend" is already a good quarter over, its time to get moving.

    A friend of mine recently decided to give up the spirits. "With my every move i will cast these evil spirits from my life and into the deepest hottest pits of a religous hell!!!!". I think i'll hack one vice at a time, but i'm a very vice oriented person. Always looking down at what is in front of me trying to find satisfaction from inanimate objects. Right now, i'll use coffee, later, perhaps food or vodka. I think its silly, its totally manufactured from habit, and should be kept in perspective.

    Friday, August 26, 2005

    default turns into aloha

    Tonite started like most fridays but certainly had a different feel. I got home round 6, went for a nice run, took a shower, ate some leftover salad, ate some modified milk ingredients in an experimental rasberry yogurt, then settled down to figure out if plans were in the works for myself, for the evening. And they really were not.

    I do believe the highlight of the night was watching the slicks strutting sur hellgin, they luv it. Its quite a site when you're tourin along, walking as slow as possible, brushing past hipsters, hoochies, complicated short men, confused fourtysomthin's, buskers, and a religeous dude semipreachin to the superslim, potientially heroin addicted brunette street girl that often tours the bank st. curcuit. "God will forgive anything" is what i heard approaching gilmour on the west side... once i toured past the dj in "the freehouse" and spotted near emptiness inside, i realized i couldn't handle walking past le griffin. I had inhaled as much as that surface skimming world could give me for the day. I headed on and past ready for what the night had to bring me.

    It brought me comfort. The nite ended, aloha, yay, as asleep as i am now to live as loud, i will be more sleeper tsunami.