Thursday, September 28, 2006


I have nothing to tell any of you. Usually when that happens, I just don't write anything and some of you who don't see me in real life on a regular basis perhaps wonder if I'm dead or have robbed a bank.

Switching it up today, though, just to keep the non-interesting interesting. Or not interesting. And not in a Mametian sense either (sorry).

So that's it.

Go do some work now.

Thursday, September 21, 2006


So Americans make fun of Canadians, but Canadians make fun of Americans too.

The salient difference, which I realised today while telling TJ a story that Jeremy told me about American tourists and hand sanitizer, is that Americans make fun of Canadians for things they think they do, whereas Canadians make fun of Americans for things they actually do.

There is no US equivalent of Rick Mercer's "Talking to Americans" segment. There are just t-shirts that say "Canada: They Made A Country And Nobody Came." Which is not exactly comedy gold.

For Kat Vondy

Roasted red peppers in a jar.

Spinach sour cream dip. And those vegetable chips.

Pepper salami slices. Frozen lemonade cans, to be defrosted and mixed with much water for a lightly lemony drink.

Green beans, which tonight I steamed with some red pepper and then mixed in sesame oil and a little garlic.

Ravioli. Chicken and mushrooms inside.

Romaine. Because spinach can kill you.

Shredded wheat--the little guys. Back to the breakfast I ate for all of grade nine. Did it make me any happier or get me out of middle school any faster? No. But brown sugar in milk: yum.

That green sludge fruit puree health drink stuff. Feels so fortifying to drink.

Sausage with herby things in it.

Wine. (red, chewy)

Come over for dinner, we will feast like kings.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Aisles, Stalls, Rows

Yesterday I went grocery shopping with the express purpose of buying delicious food that cost more money than food I would usually buy myself. I don't think I've ever been a fussy eater--maybe for a couple weeks in Japan when I had incredibly-salty-fish-for-dinner-every-night fatigue, but I soon got over myself and ate all sorts of frightening things like straight-up chunks of beef fat, crickets and whole small octopi. Alex Chung would be proud of me.

But lately my stomach has turned into the fussy two-year old who is hungry but refuses to eat anything. I chalk this up to a couple things: eating the same boring dependable meals for two years now takes ninety percent of the fun out of eating and never getting around to eating a proper lunch or dinner for two weeks running teaches my stomach to just close itself off to the idea of food. So I bought a lot of yummy treats for myself in order to coax my hermit crab of a stomach to unfurl itself. Spoonful of sugar, etc.

At the grocery store I saw a guy that had been in the class that I TAed in the spring. It feels strange to run into people I know in LA, because shouldn't LA be like New York, which seems just too big to run into anyone? And yet I do run into people: at the grocery store, at the carwash, in coffee shops, at the movies. Incidentally, the movies and the grocery (well, and The Grove) is where all of my celebrity sightings have taken place. Will Smith is very tall and his wife is very small, Charlie Sheen has no ass and looks like someone's deranged uncle, Joey Slotnik favours the salad-and-sushi part of Trader Joe's and can't believe you recognise him, Reese Witherspoon wears a toque when it's not even that cold out but we all know why.

But better than running into a celebrity is running into someone I actually know. It feels small and homey to run into an aquaintance in the aisle or the parking garage and chat and think about them as fully formed people who have to do things like buy eggs.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Late Breaking Stink News

So last night, after I had declared my bathtub a toxic wasteland and thought about waking up early to pack shampoo to the school recreation centre, I went in to brush my teeth and holy crap! the water was gone! Leaving a brown layer of sludge behind! Gross!

I boiled as a kettle and a pot of water for a nice hot chaser to the chemicals and the drain ate it up. O sweet relief. The hot water got rid of the brown too. Then, for the sheer joy of it, I had a shower.

A clean bathroom is the road to a peaceful mind.

Hurting Not Helping

Holy crap, the bathtub is stopped up. Not slow draining, stopped. I suspect new roommate's gooey hair products have not helped this. He likely suspects that my long(er) hair doesn't help either. We're both to blame: we ran that water, we saw it going down the drain. Of course it had to end.

Yesterday we had to bail water into the toilet in order to keep the swamp from overflowing onto the bathroom floor. Ten minutes of bailing equalled ten minutes of showering.

Tonight when I got home I poured a whole jug of horrible drain opener chemical down there. And it did nothing. Except render the tub completely noxious with poisonous chemicals.

Soooo. 1) Bathe in water from sink? 2) Shower at school? (roommate doesn't have a shower at work, I feel like a shithead for unilaterally dumping that stuff in now.)

Fortunately, the weather is cooperating by making the apartment a hot little box, even at 11 at night, making showering kind of all I want to do, all the time.

Yours in stink.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Safe Injection Site

During the AIDS conference in Toronto this summer Bill Clinton spoke. He had a lot to say but what it mostly boiled down was, hey, let's stop judging people and help them instead.

I know it doesn't need to be said, but this guy runs planet-sized circles around George W. Bush. Dick-sucking and all. Just the fact that he's an orator, and can turn a phrase, can friends-Romans-countrymen ideas around and make them suddenly clear to everyone listening, is qualification alone. Granted, I'm happy George is not similarly skilled and is not able to make everyone see his rich asshole way of thinking as the path to wisdom.

Anyway, one of the things Clinton talked about was that abstinence education is bullshit and a waste of time and the energy and money should instead be spent on helping young people make informed choices about their sexuality. I read somewhere else recently that some high school in the American heartland decided to abandon its abstinence education in favour of sex education when they discovered 13% of the girls in the school were pregnant. Someone pointed out to Clinton that he had supported abstinence education when he was president, and he said, "I was wrong."

Okay, so in the line of Clinton's sage advice (re: judging vs. helping) the Canadian Feds recently allowed Vancouver's experimental safe injection site (the only such program in North America) to remain open for at least another year and a half. For anyone who has not experienced Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, it's a nightmare-scape district of people ravaged by drug and alcohol abuse. Vancouver and Victoria draw a lot of homeless people because of their (relatively) mild winters and the Downtown Eastside becomes the area of congregation. Needle-sharing and overdoses lead to rampant disease and death.

The safe injection site is obviously not the solution to a complex problem, but the idea behind it is so great: officially acknowledge the fact that people are going to engage in unsafe behaviour and treat them like humans. Give them opportunities to help themselves and educate themselves in their choices and provide them with the bare minimum of care. People go wrong, but that doesn't mean they should be abandoned as garbage.

Anyway, I rank people who hurt themselves with drugs as not quite as low as those who those who hurt others, by, say, going to Asia to have sex with children or beating their own families. If public policy should punish and abandon anyone, let's start with those people.