May 28, 2011

I Post Videos As Filler

From my brother-in-law, Lalo, who loves this dancing. I resisted the song based on the band's name. Buuuuuut, it is catchy. And these peeps have moves.

(some mild profanity in the opening dialogue)



Did you know that Salvador Dali and Walt Disney had plans for a short film? It was finished by some other people, and is kind of bizarre and kind of amazing. Law-breaking-video is viewable here.


And because 7 million people have seen it and can testify to the cuteness, I give you CAT MOM HUGS BABY KITTEN! (baby kittens are so much cuter than non-baby kittens)

May 27, 2011

I Want a Lazy Day

I wish this could be today's anthem (minus a line or two).
Thanks to Heather for making sure I heard this tune.


Now off to work I go (hi-ho, hi-ho)!

May 25, 2011

I Am In Bed Before Eleven, That's Why.

Sometimes my heart just swells up with love for my friends and I smile to myself and wish I could squeeze them endlessly and feed them dessert and reminisce about HOW GREAT IT IS THAT WE ARE FRIENDS.

Tonight I mean you, Jackie. Laura. Aban. Nadine. Aimee.

And now each of those names has me thinking about all the other friends we share who are equally great and I just. Want. To. Hug. The. World.

(moods like this are rare and deserve to be recorded)

May 24, 2011

Famil-amily

These are some of my peeps.
Sa-Sa and Lalo (my brother referred to them as Slalo)

I guess that would make them Jeeve or Stenn. Not sure which is better/worse.

And of course, the World's Cutest Niece and Nephew!

Golly, I love them. Don't they all look good?*



*The family not pictured here (JR, Mom & Dad) are also good-looking. They just haven't yet requested their very own photo shoots.

May 20, 2011

The Post That Almost Was

Yesterday I started writing a blog entry on my iPod. It was honest and sincere. But it was a bit of a rant. Possibly hurtful to some of my readers. Definitely open for misinterpretation.

Then I accidentally deleted it. When I realized what I had done, I was annoyed - so much thought! So much time! But the second thought was, Perhaps this is for the best.

Sometimes self-censorship is more difficult and humbling than honest vulnerability.

I have a feeling that some of these ideas may still find their way here, but if they do, they will be softer, gentler forms of the same thoughts. Ones that have gone through the wringer of silence and passed the mantle of offline conversations first.

May 18, 2011

Too Much To Tweet (#MyLifeAsANanny)

Today was endlessly amusing chez nous.
(It was also endlessly frustrating, but more on that in an upcoming post. This is all about the laughter.)

C: Do snakes poop?
Me: Yes. All animals poop. If you eat, you poop.
C: But where does it come out from?
Me: They have a special hole just like we do. But I'm not sure where it is, because they don't have bums like we do.
C:
Do alligators poop? Crocodiles? Because they don't have bums either.
Me: They poop out of a special hole like snakes do.
C: But where is it?
Me: I have no idea.

(ten minutes later)

C: Where do clementines come from?
Me: They grow on trees!
C: Where did you come from?
Me: I grew inside my mommy.
C: But how did you get all your parts?
Me: Pardon?
C: How did you get all your people parts?
Me: Um.

(five minutes later)

C: I'm going to read your book!
Me: Ok.
C: But there aren't any pictures!
Me: No, there aren't.
C: But how can you read it then? There are supposed to be pictures!!
Me: I just read the words.
C: Oh. Well, what does it say on this page?
Me: I can't see the book from here, bud. I have to see it to read the words.

(five minutes later)

C: Can you carry me, cause I - OH. I have to go pee RIGHT NOW!
Me: Then go!
(he runs upstairs)
C: I really really really have to pee right now! (he starts peeing) Ah, ah, finally, ah, finally. I REALLY had to pee. I thought I was going to DIE if I didn't go pee.

May 17, 2011

Song For Today: Tuesday

Walking home from work this afternoon in the rain, this song came on.

I wanted to put away my umbrella and punch the air victoriously.

But I hate being wet.

May 15, 2011

Mark Your Calendars! Or Throw Them Out.

Apparently, the rapture is happening in six days.

When I first saw on ad in the subway declaring "Judgment Day is Coming: May 21, 2011" I thought it was some sort of gimmick. Turns out, it isn't. The people at FamilyRadio.com honestly believe that Jesus is going to take them to heaven on Saturday evening.I wonder what will go through their minds on Sunday morning. How do you regroup after that? I have seen them out in Dundas Square a few times now. I shied away from them, but I kind of wish I hadn't.

But Beth, you might be saying, don't you believe in the rapture and Jesus and heaven?

Why yes, I might respond, I do. But Jesus said, quite clearly, that no one knows when He'll come back. Simple. (Ok, not fully simple. But talking about the rapture is weird, so I'm almost done.)

An imaginary conversation with a Judgment Day Dude might have gone like this:
JDD: Judgment Day is coming!
Me: It is?
JDD: Yes, on Saturday.
Me: Oh. I don't think I agree with that.
JDD: It is true. Here is a pamphlet that will convince you.
Me: No, thanks. I'd rather just talk to you. Can I ask you a question?
JDD: Of course.
Me: So, it seems to me that you are very prepared for Judgment Day to come on Saturday. Are you prepared for Judgment Day not to come on Saturday?
JDD: Pardon?
Me: I mean, I believe in Jesus and the rapture and heaven. I am guessing you do too (although I am guessing most of our other beliefs are different). I believe that I am ready for that day to come. But I also believe I am ready for it not to come - that I am ready to live another sixty years loving Jesus and loving people, and if the rapture doesn't happen before I die, my relationship with Jesus will be ok. But I am concerned for you, that if Jesus doesn't come back on Saturday, your worldview is going to take a major beating.
JDD: But he is going to come back. Here's a pamphlet that tells you why. And how you can get ready.
Me: Thanks... (takes it and walks away)
---



This afternoon, I walked past opposing protests. One group was pro-Palestine. The other, obviously, Israeli. As I approached, I had to force myself to stay calm. And not to cry.

Calm, because of the palpable tension in the air. It was peaceful, but it was tense. Many police officers were there.
Cry, because it broke my heart to see again that injustice and factions thrive both at home and abroad. I want peace. No one is blameless. But no one deserves destruction.



Ah, religion and dogmatism make me very sad today.
That is all I have to say.

May 14, 2011

Ugh.

That is all I have to say.



This video is mesmerizing and the song is... fantastic.

May 13, 2011

A Triet of Thoughts

(à la Jesskah)

I. You know how sometimes, in a serious conversation, the person you're talking to says exactly the wrong thing and they have no idea, and certainly didn't mean to, but you can't help it and you just shut down and are left unable to express the things that need to be said?

I wish there was a way around that.


II. I think I am more excitable about the good things that happen to my friends than the good that comes my way. There is something about the selflessness of rejoicing with someone you love that is gleeful and pure.


III. Last night, I almost cried at McDonald's. Because someone got a bed and didn't have to sleep on the floor anymore. Because my friend got to witness that joy. Because sometimes, hearing a story about someone jumping on their bed is the most beautiful thing in the world.

May 11, 2011

In 100 Years, Mary Smith Will Be An Anomaly

I really like cemeteries. I find them restful and reflective and fascinating.

I think I am going to start collecting unusual names off tombstones. My list currently includes:

Ouisbert Earlington Sears
Eleutheria Prodanou
Telesphore Gingras
Capel Emery
Fletcher Barker Gibbs
Cooderham Warden


Fantastic, right!?

May 7, 2011

Death And Dying

If I ever have a terminal illness that leaves me unable to communicate, I don't think I want to be kept alive. I don't want a feeding tube. I don't want to be trapped, too dependent to even lift my own head.

If I ever have an illness that robs me of my mind, treat me with dignity and hurry my death along. The thought of becoming someone else in my mind or heart is repulsive and terrifying. I don't want to do that to the people I love.

Radical thought: I might actually be okay with assisted suicide in some situations. Um, don't freak out. I may take that back. But I will throw it out there for now.

My friend Jay recently blogged about writing a "final post." I have no plans on dying anytime soon, but I am thinking that it's a good idea. One thing that has come up over and over in the stories I have heard at hospice training is the importance of closure. If at all possible, I want to offer that.

Another reoccurring theme is our cultural discomfort with the reality of death. In one video, the family of a terminally ill child commented, "If we could just realize that we are all terminal, things would look different..."

We are all terminal. I am terminal. This is not a thought that I will be consumed by, but is also not a fact to be ignored. Coming to terms with my own mortality gives me the freedom to engage in others' mortality. And I want to be there. Because really, this is one of the biggest and most emotionally taxing life-realities that we each have to face.

Ok. There is no way to wrap this post up. I have written it during another hospice volunteer training session. I think everyone should take this training just to make us better at life.

May 5, 2011

Cats Are Verboden

I told Nadine the other day that I am not allowed to own a cat. The second you have a single woman and a cat... Well, I just can't handle being remotely close to that stereotype. Or having people attempt to  joke about that stereotype with me. Or anything like that. Besides, I'm not ready to give up my jet-setting ways, and pets have a way of making that difficult.

There is a house in the wealthy neighbourhood I live in. The boys call it "The Cat House" and rightly so. On any given day, there are between four and seven golden cats out front. The faint smell of cat urine is sometimes detectable from the sidewalk. It is a dilapidated house, particularly in comparison to the rest of the street. But those cats sure do seem content. And someone sure does love them.


Then along comes a video like this, and I think, Maybe...maybe a kitten wouldn't be such a bad idea.

May 4, 2011

In 11 Short Weeks

Today I bought a guide book. A guide to the Camino de Santiago. Because I am going there. In roughly twelve weeks.
I may never come back.
Kidding!
I am seriously excited for this trip. Here are the reasons why:
1. My friend Kirsten is lovely and smart. We have vacationed together twice, and have fond memories of both Saskatoon and Cuba. I expect this will blow them both out of the water.
2. I crave simplicity and solitude these days. You can't get much simpler than walking for three weeks with all your provisions on your back. And there will be plenty of solitude, I'm sure. Hopefully not the kind that comes as a result of conflict after three weeks of travel in a foreign country where neither of us speak the language.
3. This month abroad will mark another transition in my life. My last day of work as a nanny is July 29. When I come back from Spain, I will hopefully have other employment lined up - I currently have several communications/admin/writing leads... And I have dreams for the 2011-2012 year (why do I still follow the school calendar in my head? I have been done school for FIVE years now.)... These dreams will be publicized shortly. But for now, I would just like to bask in the glory that will be August.
Sun.
Silence.
Serenity.
Sweat.
Simplicity.
SANTIAGO.

May 2, 2011

Singing Sensations & Shriveled Stems

All my life, I have been an ardent raisin nay-sayer. There is no dish improved by their presence and I have never desired to eat a box of them plain (shudder).

When I first watched Benny and Joon, and Joon explains her distaste for raisins because they "are dried-up, humiliated grapes," I said a hearty, "Amen, sister!"

But over time, I have come to tolerate their presence in my life, and don't shy from them as I once did.

And then, last month, I discovered Sultanas. Or at least, what I'm told are Sultanas. I think of them as "white raisins." they are larger, softer, juicier than their darker siblings. More than palatable in a trail mix; almost enjoyable on their own. I am contemplating seeking them out for regular snacking consumption. I am no longer a raisin hater, it seems.

I am happy to have found another dried fruit I enjoy (cranberries and apricots are the other winners), Yet I had a frightening thought regarding my raisin colour preferences:

Am I now a Raisin Racist? Have I become a Sultana Supremacist?

(What would the California Raisins think??)

May 1, 2011

The Naked and Famous (I Am Neither)

So, last night.
I went to a concert and I think I was one of the first to leave, and it wasn't because I disliked the music.

I loved the music. I was a little sad to miss the headlining act (Foals), but my lovely friend Sarah was running a 10k race this morning (who does that!?), and needed her beauty sleep. And solo-concert-ing is not really my cup o' tea. Although I did try it once.

Anywho. We stayed for 1.5 acts, which was well-worth my $15. Go check out Freelance Whales. But the point of the concert was for Sarah to catch The Naked and Famous. When she invited me, I thought, "Have I heard of them before? ...Sure, I'll come."

And I don't regret it. Downloaded the album as soon as I got home. My endorsement is so complete that I am forcing myself not to highlight every song on their record "Passive Me Aggressive You."