Saturday, April 26, 2008

brush with schmarminess: monika schnarre

caught a glimpse of her at luna cafe, dovercourt and argyle. she left her black pooch by the door and came in for a coffee as we brunched. she must live in the hood because dN has seen her around a few times. models are soooooooooo thin.


went for tea and chatter to a friend's place last night and we spoke about happiness, love and hate, how men and women lie and why. there is almost a cult of positive thinking alive in our world today but sometimes it is not a sentiment coming from a peaceful, healthy place. like my friend's former boss, who famously said "i don't allow any negative energy here." was an oozing swamp of contradiction because he infected so many good people with his unrealized negativity and harmful behaviours. a study in contradiction. we also talked about the epidemic of positivity where people are medicated as depressed when they are truly just going thru a blue phase, a normal part of life. they are urged to numb themselves instead of living and working their way thru it. i think it is healthy to have a balance, a spectrum... that tough times and challenge can lead to character strength, change and opportunity. people that have just sailed thru life, if there are any, have missed out on a chance for deeper experience. sure, there are times when a good self pity cry or bad attitudes spill out. sometimes the bad stuff in life, is just that. the trick is seeing it for what it is (self pity, bad attitude, bad luck etc) and moving forward. seeing the metaphor or lessons in it and feeling grateful for the perspective. i think the issue with the cult of positivity is that it can be the person who edits you in real time, saying you shouldn't say that, you should say this instead. like people are some form of robot, needing reprogramming at all times to truly be happy. there may be some truth in the reprogramming but they certainly don't need it shoved down their throat. compassion. seeing things from all sides. i had to laugh at myself this week. during my restorative yoga class. we were interrupted by a smattering of construction noise from above. for the whole hour. i thought to myself, i could be annoyed, it's after 7pm. but hey, the world doesn't stop for yoga. i decided to think of the hammering noises as friendly reminders to concentrate, be in the room, relax. my mind was so easily distracted that the frequent reminders ended up being a service! and i just smiled at myself and the situation. grateful.

a wise woman told me this story. there once was a king and a servant. whatever happened -- good or bad, the servant would say "thank you god, couldn't be better." one day the king was working in the field and accidentally chopped off his thumb. the servant said "thank you god, couldn't be better." the king was outraged..."what do you mean it couldn't be better?! it could be better, i could have my thumb! I have had enough of you, you are banished, leave immediately." so the servant left and the king continued on his journey. the next village he came upon was full of cannibals. they were heating up a pot to cook the next unsuspecting passerby for lunch. they eyed the king and were delighted. then they saw the bandages and missing thumb and decided not to risk infecting their whole tribe with a tainted lunch. the king escaped with his life and ran back home. he went to see the servant as he was packing up his belongings and family and forgave him, thanking him. the servant said "thank you god, couldn't be better." the king was puzzled. he said, "how can you still say that when i banished you and you would have had no way to feed your family." he said, "it's easy, if you hadn't done that i would have been lunch!" i am sure this is one of those stories that has been retold time after time and changed along the way. it's a good one to keep in your pocket though. secret sauce to be sure.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

whatta racket!

oh the drama! a few times a week the neighbours two doors down come outside, stand on the lawn and yell to the crazy chinese lady next door.


sometimes they bring their crying baby for effect and add baby-related pleas...The baby can't sleep!

two days ago, they kicked it up a notch. during my 1 o'clock con call (thank heavens for mute) the husband came and pounded on the door, heavily for minutes with the same pleas. i thought they might call the police.

it is a never-ending cycle. they live in a semi so they share walls...likely extra loud for the baby family especially.

it's a sad state of neighbourly affairs. i feel for the family but also suspect that my neighbour is playing her music so loud to drown out the competing voices in her head. not an easy situation for either party i suspect. they should give her an ipod with headphones!

Friday, April 18, 2008

sound-print: spring

outside my window at this very moment, the neighbours are playing street hockey! will have to snap a photo at the house this weekend because there are blooms popping up around our bay window! so optimistic. we had a picnic at lunch today, sprawled out on lawn chairs and soaked in the vitamin D. bring it on!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

patio season begins!

had my first official patio visit this afternoon. caught the setting sun on the drake patio over a plate of fries and a few sips of beer with some good company. cheers! let the season begin.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

i beget

i met this charming 5 year old this weekend, whose favourite expression was "I beget!" ...instead of I forget! her younger brother was 4 and really into polar bears. sweetness!

green day

this weekend we were on a tear with green, saving the world documentaries. first up, sharkwater -- a very passionate film that sheds light on the myths about sharks. you can really tell it was a film made from the heart. they are beautiful creatures and after watching this film, i will never even wonder what shark fin soup tastes like. how cruel! we also watched the 11th hour leonardo dicaprio's inconvenient truth. it was also informed, fiery and alarming. made me think we should start putting reflective devices on every roof top to offset the reflection that is shrinking in the arctic. might help with global cooling. see the official site here. then it was TVO for some discussion on the Dalai Lama, Tibet and China and then a snipet of sarah harmer and her crusade to save the Niagara Escarpment. ok, so i guess the TVO piece wasn't exactly green but it made me ponder. the Dalai Lama is inspiring but also strategic.

any who, the birds are chirping, there is sun trickling in my window and the day is about to begin. happy sunday everyone!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

yonge & dump-ass square

ventured to the new cinema at yonge & dundas square and i'm sorry to report but it is a new concoction that reeks of 80s suburbia. it is devoid of any originality, charm or architectural interest, if that was ever the desire. there was free popcorn but it wasn't enough of a saving grace. the square itself is a thinly veiled marketing extravaganza. it's trying very hard to be Times' Square but failing. harsh but true. inside the theatre complex, there is an intricate mesh of escalators leading to a boring big box. bland. bland, and more bland. even the eye sore scotia plaza with it's tilted rubix cube has more to offer. i didn't think it was possible for that building to one up anything. it's a shame. as an aside, we went to see smart people there. it was ho hum, definitely rental material though thomas haden church was funny and ellen page, a delight to watch. i think i was expecting juno though, so maybe i had set my standards a bit high going in. still, rainy grey saturdays have their blissful moments. i love the way the afternoon meanders. hopefully the city's other projects at the ROM and AGO offer more in the way of architectural splendor. sorry for the crankola. what can i say big box bland gets to me.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

life aquatic

something in the air whispered deep within. i need to exercise more. there's no excuse not to. so this week i took the plunge. literally. i went to my local ymca where i've been a member for years and jumped in-- feet first...into the pool. it was good. cool water, meditative laps, the zen of it all. the early morning is the best if you can get yourself there. much quieter and the possibility of getting a lane or two to yourself...bliss. i stick to breast stroke and take my time in the slow lane. i definitely want to make this a habit. takes me back in many ways to early years of swimming lessons. a very nice change from the work out mat, stationary bikes and treadmills.

Monday, April 07, 2008


congratulations to my girl feist, who cleaned up last night at the Junos.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

the million dollar butcher

a few days ago, as we turned the corner to get to our crash pad...we noticed this long, long line up of happy portugese old folk outside the butcher shop. turns out the butcher won the lottery and was handing out free chicken legs to his customers. he gave his staff $5000 bonuses. whatta story.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

where it's @

update on the hood. police came 'round this week asking about the chinese lady next door, asking all the neighbours when they had last seen her and if they knew anything about her. hope she is ok. assuming she is, i have to say that i'm loving the mystery that woman conjures. her bouquet of javex bottles has blown away with the winter chills. enjoyed my lunch on a sunny park bench today, the seagulls were looking for sharesies but we had to deny them. today is bright and sunny and full of hope. off to take a cat nap...

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

april's no fool

i love the spirit of prankster that erupts around this day. everyone nurses their inner bart simpson just a little. expect shenanigans! sort of fun to forget and then shake your head and laugh when you almost believe something so absurd for just a moment. do tell if you fell for or pulled off some great hijiinx today...don't be shy it's all in fun!