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Showing posts from December, 2010

Advent Poetry: Love

The final theme of Advent is Love.
and now a poem on Love.

Love has a beginning
in one heart.

And one heart only.

Before it lives in two,
binding them together,
pulling others in,
moving -

Before all that,

there is one heart
that beats
and beats again.

Merry Christmas, all!

Table Scraps (Round 26)

Nadine left for the holidays before I was ready for her to go. I have texted and emailed her this week to tell her so... Sigh. She did, however, leave behind the last of the delicious spinach dip (more to come at our upcoming "Dip-Fest" New Year's Eve), and these quotes that I've filed away over the last six months (last week's list is here):  

her: I do not need spiritual farting at my wedding reception.

her: I think I have to choose my boyfriend over drunk girls, and there is a chance that I'd have to share a bed with a gay man, and I'm not sure how I feel about that.

her: I was going to say a boy has never made me breakfast, but I think Matt poured me a bowl of cereal once.

her: Tell me when your bedtime is and I'll just give you the silent treatment after a certain point.

her: If he were trying at all, and failing, that would be one thing...
me: He's not trying. If he were, he wouldn't be failing.
her: That's fine then. It's okay to make…

26 Secrets

Way back in the summer, a friend and I were discussing Postsecret. She'd recently sent in a couple of postcards, and I asked her, "Do you want them to show up on the site? Or are you afraid that they will? Because I think I would feel a bit of both."

"One of them already did," she responded.

"WHAT!? For real!?"

She told me which postcard was hers; I remembered it. She also told me that the real secret was written underneath, and since Frank Warren does not tamper with the mail he receives, it will stay a secret.

In the ensuing conversation, we talked about the nature of secrets, the reality that most secrets are partial secrets; there are very few things that people hold as complete secrets from all others.

Knowing that I've considered mailing in a postcard or two myself, she asked if my secrets are actual secrets or partial secrets.

I paused when she asked, considering how to answer.

"I have both," I finally replied.

I have been thinkin…

Advent Poetry: Joy

Looking back on Week 3 of Advent, here is my poem about Joy.

Joy is always
a surprise

because it cannot be tainted
by the bitter bite
of disappointment.

It is solitary,
seemingly arbitrary
in the way it chooses
where to make its home.

And then,
it comes
with pomp and ceremony,
startling inhabitants,
settling in
and presiding over all goings-on
with confidence
and clarity.

Week 1: Hope
Week 2: Peace

More Christmas Music

After last week's post, a friend pointed out that my videos were more "winter" songs than "Christmas." Here are some of my favourite Christmas carols, for Kolten & any others who thought the same.

First, the ultimate a cappella song:

(does anyone else think of McGee and Me when they hear this?) My brother told me to check out this a cappella crew, so props to you, Stephen. And I feel the need to tell you all that I liked a cappella before it was cool. Just like I had fashion glasses before hipsters existed. My inner nerd has become trendy, but it wasn't always that way...

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Come, Though Long Expected Jesus
(I can't find any videos of decent versions. So let's all just take a minute and hum it to ourselves.)

O Holy Night

It was also difficult to find a version that I truly like of this song. But Josh Groban is OKAY. I SUPPOSE.

and one modern song:

I've realized that most of my favourite Christmas songs are in minor keys. I think…

Dip On the Brain (Round 25)

Nadine is sick. She tried blaming some of these statements on "sick brain" but such a thing does not exist. (I mentioned last week that I am thinking of ending this series. After 6 months of weekly quotes, I've decided that next week will be the last one, although I will continue to share hilarious things she & others say in a non-scheduled format)

her: I'm like an old lady. I blame low estrogen. My brain goes through menopause.

her: I hate big parties and clubs and I'm broke. But I like... making dip!

her: I'm gonna prove to you that I'm a grown up too.
me: How?
her: By copying you.

her: Can I have a clap-on, clap-off TV, please? Matthew, this is great, but...

her: It's stupid, because vampires are COLD and they SPARKLE and those are deal-breakers for me.

her: Can we just eat dip forever? I'll go on a dip diet. And get so fat. Its essentially a mayonnaise diet. Which has egg in it. That's good for you.

her: It's like I'm a reality TV show …
More texts you probably don't care about. But I want to keep a record of these things. So, lucky you.

you look like friendship
Call me needy, but I think it would be impossible to have my friendships affirmed too often.

:) Just remembered awards ceremony at nuit blanche :).
This was one highlight of a great night I fully intended to blog about. The applause of strangers is affirming.

Is he clueless?
Yes, he is. But the humour of this situation...can be publicized in a year or two.

Sounds good, chumbitt.
I think I am okay with being a chumbitt?

Ah. How have we not learnt to teleport. I want hugs.
I concur. Teleportation should have been invented long ago, and I also want hugs.

Be less white. Home guuurrrlll
Sorry. I'll try.

You are great. S and i like you and your face. And your hair.
I like this pair of girls as well. It also seems that my hair may be the most popular part of me.

You know what? I love you.
This was the first time this friend had said this to me. And it was in a contex…

Advent Poetry: Peace

This past week's Advent theme was Peace.
Here is a poem:

Peace. Shalom.
Be still.
And also with you.
Completion and wholeness.
It is now. It is here.
It is seeping and creeping coming up slowly.
A heavy weight of being known.
Loved and loving. Rest in redemption. The roots that hold us upright.

(last week's poem on Hope is here.)

Current Christmas Favourites

Christmas music is the main staple of my listening diet these days. I am eagerly awaiting the 2010 Christmas Mix from Fuel/Friends, and otherwise enjoying a playlist that may or may not include a Celine Dion album (although, apparently, I'm not supposed to admit that) and 200 other songs for the season.

Snow Club - Christmas TV

The "Come on home" chorus reminds me of a poem I wrote about a week before I first heard this song. I love it.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (You Don't Have to Put on the Red Light)

Either Christmas treason, or the best thing ever. (Every time I hear Roxanne I am reminded of the time a friend sang this song at karaoke, turning every "Roxanne" into "Beth Anne" and pointing me out to the entire bar.)

It Snowed - Meaghan Smith


The Holidays Are Here (and we're still at war) - Brett Dennan

I think this is a great contrast to Xmas is Here (War is Over).

and the too-indie-for-youtube songs:

Jeremy Fisher…

Quotes from a Handmaid That Spun My Head

I have a strange love of dystopian literature.

I read Animal Farm (of my own initiative!) in Grade 8. (I also read The Scarlet Letter that year...I applaud my teacher for allowing me these freedoms; the higher-ups must not have known.) Brave New World was the best thing I read in Grade 11, and Lord of the Flies threw me under a bus in Grade 10. 1984 (possibly an independent read) still haunts me. As does Heart of Darkness.

I remember picking The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood off a turnstile in my high school library, although I can't recall if someone recommended it to me, or I just stumbled across it in my regular browsing of the books. As a particularly naïve teenager, I'm quite sure I didn't understand half of what I was reading. But I recognized that it was shocking and profound, and it went on to my list of favourite novels.

Ten years later, four small things brought The Handmaid's Tale back into my life:
I discovered it was the 25th anniversary of its public…

Spoken Like a Former Drama Major... (Round 24)

Nadine. Still amusing. Although I am thinking about ending this series, she is continually fantastic. But don't get the wrong idea; most of her fantastic-ness comes out in the heart-to-heart conversations that don't get pulled out of context. Toronto's Best Roommate.

her: I don't know how Arabs work. I've never had one.

her: Amy Grant is like my third parent.

me: You've never seen a fake tattoo-sleeve before??
her: This is brilliant. I need one.

her: If you're on a roll, you can make $20/hr. And my bank account is inspiring me to be on a roll.

her: I'm not going to charge you for half of the remote. Since it might as well go with the TV. That way, we don't have custody issues.

her: That's a deal breaker! I could never marry or date or be seen in public with a Whiffenpoof.

her: Drama students...they'll make out with anything that's alive.

her: I like it when actors have brains.

her: I was already going to get up early to help you get dressed.


The Dating Dare: Universal Truths

These are my relationship thoughts from over the course of my matchmaking month that I think are important and true, whether looking for love online or offline:

Articulation and effort matters. If every answer on your profile is one sentence long, if you respond to my questions with vague and brief answers, I am not getting to see that you are being thoughtful about this process. I want to know that you find me actually interesting, that you are engaged and focused on our interaction, even if it is brief, and even if it is online, and even if it goes nowhere in the end. Don't be a conversation killer! Use open-ended questions (ie, ones that require more than a yes/no answer). When you have the option to make your own answer on a multiple choice question, do it! At least for 1 of the 5. The same principles apply when mingling at a party. Be your best self. Show that you have personality!

Unless you don't have a personality. Which leads us to lesson #2. You are who you are, and …

Dear December 6,

You were just about perfect.

A first snowfall.
A sleeping child.
A book that is flooring me.
A creative project that terrifies me.
A few happy conversations.

Let's have a few more days like this, okay?

The Dating Dare: Self-Awareness

I am glad I did this little eHarmony experiment, because at the very least, I learned things about myself; what I am attracted to, afraid of, and look for in my interactions with men. Here are some of them.

I am a bit more racist than I thought. It is easier to be a racist online than in person, because all you see is a one-word label. I kind of wish eHarmony had a function where I could turn off viewing ethnicities, so that I could protect myself from myself.

I would not say I am a picky person about looks (my crushes have ranged in every way possible when it comes to appearance), but excessive extra weight is a deal-breaker for me. I couldn't see anyone's photos without paying, and my instinctive fear every time I got a message from someone I found interesting was, What if they're FAT!? In my defense, I think this was a specific manifestation of the fear, What if I find them physically unattractive?? I have liked pudgy/overweight/burly/sturdy men in the past. And am sure…

Advent Poetry: Hope

This Advent season, I am visiting The Advent Door and Christmas Is Happening for a much needed dose of Jesus-focused art and thought. And I have decided to write a poem each week.

Here is my poem on Hope.

Hope is watching

Believing that the unknown
will come any day,

Knocking down walls
and swinging doors open

Sweeping the dust
that's piled in corners
into the streets
and out of our lives.

It is knowing
that a hurricane comes
to rearrange all things

To shake us
stir us
change and make us


It is saying
that life is unfinished
and the best is yet to be.

The Dating Dare: Honesty Isn't Always Best

If you want to use the internet to find a woman like me (for the sake of this entry, I will describe myself as independent, intellectual, genuine and Jesus-loving), here are three things you should probably not write on your profile:

under Additional Information You May Want To Know:

Ok. Let's be frank. Sex and sexuality is a part of life: particularly romantic relationships. I recognize that. I also recognize that men tend to be more open with their sexual desires than women (although that is changing in our culture – yet another topic I have thoughts enough to write an entire post on!). But as someone commented when I told them about this, “Isn't that stating the obvious? I would say you should publicize only if you're NOT a horny guy, because then you're unique.”

Honestly. A sexual relationship is not the only thing that most women are looking for. Sex is a part of the bigger, holistic relationship. When you are self-professed as a “horny-loving…

The Dating Dare: Intro

(This has grown into a series of entries, because it's not fair to ask you to read four pages of writing in one sitting. I know you won't, anyway. But this time, I've already written the whole series, so there won't be any surprise fake-outs and take-backs.)

One of the tried-and-true foundations of my friendship with Nadine is that when it comes to the world of dating advice and adventures, we've got each other's backs. This looks like a variety of things. Sometimes, it is being the confidante for confusion and heartache. Sometimes it is lending a helping hand (or word) in communicating with the mysterious male species. Sometimes it is giggling joyfully. And sometimes, it is daring each other to do crazy things.

I once told Nadine she should email and then go on a date with a man who approached her friend at a bar to ask if Nadine was single. And you know what? She did. I think I then helped her tell him she was uninterested in another date.

So when she dared …

Special Non-Holiday Edition (Round 23)

Special Edition!!!!

Are you curious about the theme?

Last month, I told you all that Nadine dared me to go on eHarmony for a month of free communication. So I did. I will post my thoughts and some of my experiences within the next few days. Until then, enjoy these hilarious and sometimes unkind things that she had to say about online matchmaking.

her: Oh, no! Don't do that, boys! It's so evil and rude and gross!

her:WHY? Why. Are. You.

her: Oh, he's white, good.
(to clarify, his ethnicity confirmed that he was not a "ladykiller" acquaintance with the same name...)

her: I break up with him on your behalf! "Dear ______, This is Beth's roommate. I break up with you on her behalf. Have a nice life. Good luck being right ALL the time."

her: AH! Cancel! Quit! Throw your computer! (Poor shy quiet Christian man...)

her: Did you ever hear back from the guy when you said, "I don't love you."?
me: What?
her: You know, the fat guy.
(to clarify, the "fat…