You Are From Neptune
You are dreamy and mystical, with a natural psychic ability.
You love music, poetry, dance, and (most of all) the open sea.
Your soul is filled with possibilities, and your heart overflows with compassion.
You can be in a room full of friendly people and feel all alone.
If you don't get carried away with one idea, your spiritual nature will see you through anything.
28 December 2004
25 December 2004
Scarf and hat for Cousin Janet.
17 December 2004
The esteemed group of knitters in the secret, underground, Montreal Knitting Collective had a festive holiday party chez Mouliné Yarns, located at 2679 Notre Dame W. in Montreal, not far from Atwater Market and Métro Lionel-Groulx. Our brief-but-obligatory knitting session was taped by a cameraman/reporter for Radio-Canada's "Culture Choc" program. The angle was about the resurgence of knitting (particularly among the young), and the role of blogs in promoting it all.
The majority of the evening however was spent eating, drinking, exchanging cookies, chatting, eating, and eating some more, which was simply fabulous, due to the generousity of Mouliné's owner and operator, Mme. Svetlana Kudrevich. I mean, she really had an exquisite spread. Fellow knitter Lee Ann tried to get me well drunk by pouring me a bigass glass of wine. (Thanks, Lee Ann!) Every time I thought I had finished eating, I'd see something else I felt compelled to stuff down my pie hole, and would rapidly scarf it down. Just when I thought I had made a big enough pig of myself, Reina offered up an ultra-delicious flan. And then, Svetlana produced some huge trays of pastries along with coffee, then sat them right in front of me! (How could I refuse?) Mona and I, had a nice conversation about accidents involving knitting needles, and the like, and Molly Ann joined in with her own stories of misdventures. Véronik impressed me with a story about the time she inadvertantly sewed her finger while using a sewing machine, and well--the whole thing pretty much ended up as our own decadent tribute to gluttony...
It was divine!!
However, before I forget, I simply have to show some love to the five other knitters who participated in the cookie exchange (see the picture of the cookies just under the heading):
Margaret: Butter Pecan Cookies (at 4 o'clock, on the plate)
Mona: Hildabrötchen (right in the middle)
Svetlana: Gingerbread Men (at 6 o'clock)
Véronik: Chocolate and Almond Swirls (at 1 o'clock)
Lee Ann: Hazelnut Orange Biscotti Dipped in Dark Chocolate (11 o'clock)
Yours Truly: Snickerdoodles (at 8:45-ish).
They were all simply delicious. Big ups to Svetlana for making the Gingerbread Men extra gingery! Those little men had a kick--I adore spicy food. And please accept my apologies for making the snickerdoodles sweeter than I intended. But look at it this way--if you see someone going into insulin shock, just shove one of 'em in their mouth. It should send their blood sugar soaring in no time.
For those of you who have requested it, I'll provide the recipe soon as I can make one up. I'm strictly from the "dump-n-dash" school of culinary arts.
15 December 2004
I offer to you proof that I finished the other "Gifted" mitten, and whipped up another pair of slippers for some lucky, unsuspecting family member.
That first pose with the slippers may have caused me to pull a muscle. Don't expect me to do that shit again...fallen arches, notwithstanding.
08 December 2004
(Apologies for modelling my own creations, and mostly because I have large, narrow, bony feet. Plus, I'm still pigeon-toed). These slippers were made from 85% wool, 15% mohair yarn, called "Lambs Pride" in Seafoam, supplied by the Brown Sheep Wool Company of Mitchell, Nebraska. (Don't ask me how to get there; I never venture anywhere past Sidney, and even then, it's only because I'm en route to Denver). I used big 'ol needles; a size 9 mm, if memory serves. I gave these to my cousin Roz who was happy to have them.
This is what happens when you have a lot of leftover junk yarn and don't know what to do with it. This lady had a pattern that seemed easy enough to follow using a bunch of squares stitched together...it was easy, but far more work than I really felt like doing. Once I did it, it still looked jive. (So I gave these to my cousin Rachelle, Roz's sister. She's good about taking my rejects).
But it's the thought that counts. And here's what I'm thinking of doing with this stuff: I'm going to give them as Christmas gifts to other unsuspecting relatives. I chose acrylic yarn because it launders well, and the recipients are elderly, absent-minded as hell, and highly likely to toss everything into the wash. Had I blown money on the good stuff, I'd have to freak if they inadvertantly felted everything.
This cost me a bit more to make, but nothing horribly extravagant. I saw a pattern that appeared similar, committed it to memory, and kind of re-created it at home. There's a hat that goes with it, but I'll get around to all that later. Right now, I'm working on other things that are even louder, and more outrageous than this is. I think I'll give this to my friend Tracy's daughter, Sidney. She can handle it.
04 December 2004
I only wish she hadn't sullied Elmo the way she did.
29 November 2004
28 November 2004
24 November 2004
My dearly departed Aunt Dorothy was one of those people who meant well, but she had this tendency to cause nervous disorders in several of my blood relatives. That aside, her heart was genuinely enormous, and whether it was food, shelter, or clothing, she was all about giving (whether we liked it, or not). Those of us blessed enough to be related to her, learned from her example, and this indeed has proven to be a gift that truly keeps on giving. She had some other personality traits (or perhaps, disorders) that have infected some of us, as well. But we won't get into that right now. I'm trying to keep this up on a positive tip. Her gifts were given through kind acts as well as items of necessity. She was all about sharing, which is becoming all too rare, of late.
My rant has comes from a spiritual place as well as a worldly one. In this world of excess, it can be a real struggle to live a life that embraces simplicity. Nevertheless, one way of making a contribution can be something as simple as making time to volunteer for a social cause that promotes giving instead of taking. Another way is by setting an example of giving like my late Auntie did. And then, as another way of making a small statement against consumerism-gone-crazy, I invite you to join us who will be observing "Buy Nothing!" Day, November 26, 2004.
22 November 2004
21 November 2004
Princess Nala Alizé Tajuana
The Princess was adopted from the Nebraska Humane Society. Although her previous family stated on her adoption papers that she is 3 years old, her demeanor and size indicate otherwise. She was unbelievably tiny, even for a guinea piglet, and since moving to Grandma's Crib, she has put on a bit of weight. She remains rather timid, but we're working valiantly to socialize her a bit more. Grandma claims that she communicates with her, but I suspect it's more a case of my mother speaking for her (as she does for most people, it seems). She drinks and (subsequently) pees very, very frequently. I hope this is only a nervous habit, and not some weird water addiction...
Trefflé Chanceux DeQuan
The exotic Trefflé came to us from the Capital Humane Society in Lincoln. His previous owners had named him Pepé (ugh!), which is ironic, since he doesn't pee nearly as much as Princess Nala. He is about a year old, and smells like a real boar if you know what I mean. His fur color is called 'brown agouti', and his swirly fur pattern is known as 'abyssinian.' (It's so nice to have that link with Mother Africa, you know). I introduced him to Nala one day, and of course, he tried to force her into assuming the position. Fortunately, I was there to stop any freaky stuff, because the Princess is kind of young for all of that. Trefflé being a male, probably found her youth and beauty irresistable, but I had to get him hip, that he's now in a Matriarchal Domaine. But he is a pig, so I don't expect him to pay me much attention. They never do, it seems.
16 November 2004
"I am distressed when people are shooting off guns and throwing fruit at our players. I just have a hard time with that..."
- Bill Callahan
12 November 2004
11 November 2004
05 November 2004
I should have known better. Damn.
Things went from bad to worse on Wednesday, when I took my beloved elder guinea pig Val-Dijon to the vet for surgery to remove a giant raspberry-looking tumor from his ass. He made it through the surgery, and was even up and about for a few hours, when the Grim Reaper of Rodents made an appearance, and whisked him off to the Rainbow Bridge. Although I will miss him terribly, at least he gets to be with his dearest pig pal, Stella, who made the journey this past May. My grief is more intense than usual, because I wasn't well prepared for his dying. (He was otherwise in good health--or so I thought).
To add another insult to major injuries in my life, I think I've put my back out digging Val-Dijon's "final resting place."
Things just aren't working out for me this week...but maybe things are working out the way they're supposed to. Perhaps the answers will come later.
I gotta go now...I think I'm getting my period.
31 October 2004
Paramedic: What's her first name?
Clueless son: "Uh....Mama, what's yer name?"
I swear to God I'm not making this up. At least he didn't say "Mama".
15 October 2004
One of my classmates (who should go nameless, but everybody already knows him) had what began as a small gathering in his parents home, while they were out of town, of course. I remember sitting on the couch in the living room, in the dark, with only the faint glow from the fluorescent light of the kitchen as backlight. With me were two or three others (of course, I can't remember who), and we were having this deep-yet-meaningless conversation about something or other, when this kid comes crashing through the front screen door glass, head first. He didn't seem to bleed much. I do remember him dusting himself off in time to go back outdoors to finish fighting. At the time, I didn't know who's house I was at, but that wouldn't be the first, nor would it be the last time that would happen.
I attended the senior awards banquet, largely forgetting who was awarded what. My prime motivation for attending was a free meal. I do recall friends getting awards, but the only one that remains clear was the award for "Senior Boy With the Most Children," and "Senior Boy with the Most Children by the Most Girls." This honour was bestowed by the athletic department, with various team members compiling the stats. And as virility would have it, the same guy won both awards.
Aside from making it sound like I graduated from the most drug-infested, out-of-control, ghettofied high shool in the world, I mention these stories because of my 25th year high school reunion, which was held this past summer. Although I've kept in touch with several of my former schoolmates (whether they be in or out of correctional facilities, 12-step programs, and the like), I elected not to return and attend. It's nice to know that those who organized the event were kind enough to tape the obligatory "class picnic," and have posted it online for the entire world to see and no doubt, laugh at hysterically. One of the men in the video just happens to be the same guy who threw the party, and impregnated so much of the female student body (present company excluded). See if you can guess which one it is!
It's a miracle any of us can remember anyone else, all considered...
P.S. No prizes will be awarded to those who guess correctly. So don't get too worked up or anything.
11 October 2004
or "A Case for Epilation."
I'm not sure if it's a true story or not, but it is different. I'm thinking either this guy is the filthiest person ever, or more likely it got wedged up in there after it got snagged on his sweater. Or he's just lying in the hope that he can get his "fiht-ayne" minutes.
Some people got no shame, baby--no shame.
Among my many claims to fame, were the performances I gave in my final year, which included a Christmas Concert in which I wheezed through with an asthma attack (then drove myself to the hospital for the second time that day), and the spring concert performed with a mass choir and symphony orchestra. I was recovering from a hellish case of food poisoning and warbled my way through Bach's Magnificat before easing off stage to resume my activities as human cuisinart.
I think it was karma, because I was notorious for attending recitals of others and doing my best to distract them, and thus, ruin their performance. But hell, it was fun. Crazy kids, and all that. You get the deal.
Since that time, my singing has curtailed considerably. But by chance, I happened to hear a song I sang for an audition many, many, (many) years ago, and it got me thinking about it all. It was Laschia Ch'io Pianga from the opera Rinaldo by Handel. Not the easiest piece of music to sing, but I have a thing for baroque and singing in Italian (which helped).
In some of my ensemble work, I recall the people who I sang with, and wonder what's happened to them. Rob McCartney is the evening news anchor on KETV. He had this girlfriend who was always with him. I believe she's still with him, because they married and have three kids. And while I normally find that type of thing annoying as hell, with her it was cool, because she was quite nice. Another (who you can read about by following this link) is currently serving a hella long sentence in prison for 2nd degree murder of her boyfriend. I guess he got on her nerves in a serious way, because she stabbed him to death with a knife from the kitchen, then poured gasoline around his bed as he lay there bleeding to death. I don't know that she lit it up, however. I forget. Anyway, it was all very tragic. And she was extraordinarily talented. She had an amazing voice, and was studying art. Her tastes were a tad gaudy, but she had a good eye for colour. That much I recall.
My voice teachers ranged from angry and obese (some cow named Eileen), to tiny and neurotic, with an overactive bladder (that would be Connie). It's amazing I learned f*ck all. Then again, that's what I get for going to Dear Ol' Nebraska U.
By the way, I'm a mezzo. I used to be a coloratura soprano, but as the sands of time poured through the hourglass that is my life, my voice changed. It happens. And if anyone's interested, I'm available for weddings, funerals, bar mitzvahs, birthdays, retirement parties, and any event involving large quanties of curried foods. Drop me an e-mail and maybe we can work something out.
10 October 2004
“Patience is the key, those who didn't have any for Frank had darned well better have it for Bill C., because the road to ruin is paved with the contracts of former coaches.”
- Mike Nolan
Patience emphasizes calmness, self-control, and the willingness or ability to tolerate delayCalmness emphasizes patience, self-control, and the willingness or ability to tolerate delay.
Self-control emphasizes patience, calmness, and the willingness or ability to tolerate delay.
- Steve Gomez
07 October 2004
I'm having a midlife crisis. Those of you who know me, realize that much of my life has been lived in a state of crisis, but this one is different. It involves hormones. No, really!
Instead of triggering migraines, acne, and fluid retention, this one has me thinking lascivious thoughts and making cow eyes at a certain person who writes for a certain newspaper, and has had his own byline for a quite some time. (Okay, not that long. We're not talking 'Methuselah" here. He is a little older, but damn. I'm not into the geriatric set, y'know).
To protect the guilty (and most of all, myself), I will not be naming names. But I love the way he styles. The only thing he's missing is a fedora with one of those little press cards sticking out of the band. And no, dammit. It's not Matt Drudge. Blecccch!
Enough of this daydreaming (for now). I have to go renew my auto insurance. Life can be such a buzzkill at times...
05 October 2004
If I may, I wish to offer a 'cyber novena' for some friends and their relatives. Vijay's grandma is in hospital with heart trouble. The medical experts aren't sure what to do. I will say a prayer for her to make a speedy and full recovery. Jacques father, Docteur Pierre-Paul, is having hip replacement surgery today. I will pray for him to get back to health soon, too. My dear friend Susan's mother-in-law is recovering from a stroke. I will continue to pray for Susan and her family, because they've been through so very much in the last year.
Today the veterinarian told me that I have a very healthy guinea pig. He weighs 2.7 lbs. and hates getting shampooed. That's a pity, because he has a long and flowing mullet of fur from his ass that requires regular maintenance. It doesn't bother him, but as a mother, I worry. No doubt all you other mothers out there are feeling me completely, right about now.
I really ought to put the trash out. I've been putting it off all day, and I'll be damned if I let it sit in the vestibule until Friday!
P.S. Today is Patrick Roy's birthday.
03 October 2004
Then they got all worked up because they couldn't find anyone to replace him that the megaputz athletic director was willing to hire. Or even make an offer, then deny he did so. Finally, Crazy Al Davis kicks Bill Callahan to the curb, and he magically becomes available to fill the void which grows more and more immense by the moment...fast forward to today, and now these same cry babies are disgusted that he wasn't able to immediately produce a juggernaut of old, à la Tom Osborne.
Is there no satisfying these deluded farmers?
Never mind. I know the answer to that question. We all do.
30 September 2004
Some of Montreal. A rather miniscule yet fervent bit of Montreal. The Expos have finally shrivelled up and blown southwestward to The District. As if I care...
In my wayward youth, I was madly in love with Dennis 'El Presidente' Martinez. Just like my inability to get algebra, I managed to get over it all. I mean, him. And MLB.
My GP was the team doctor. When I asked him about that whole "peeing on of hands" business involving Moises Alou's blisters, he played dumb. Which is good, I believe. If he'd copped to it, Gawd knows what he'd tell other people about my physical anomalies. One thing's for sure...I don't pee on my hands. And I have no blisters. So deal.
26 September 2004
Can't say that the concept of walking into a room of strangers, having them pick you apart, and decide behind your back as to whether or not you're 'good enough' to roll with their kind, is worth anyone's time...
On the real, ask yourselves this--"are they good enough to hang with You?"
25 September 2004
Yesterday, some nut job from Beaconsfield attempted a power play for my beloved knitting meetup group. One has to wonder what motivates a fifty-something woman to appoint herself as Knitting Tsarina for All of Montreal. She's trippin'...she's trippin' hard.
As is always the case this time of year, my allergies are the shits. Time for a snort of Nasacort and some anagesics..
20 September 2004
- Ricky (To the SWAT team sharpshooters, as he's being held at gunpoint by Mr. Lahey, from the Season 5 finale of "Trailer Park Boys").
I adore autumn. It started during my wayward adolescence. It was then that I realized I didn't really like hot weather. People describe autumn as being moody and unpredictable, which is frequently the way they describe my personality. But all that was before meds...yet I still adore autumn.
Yesterday, three people died, and as if that wasn't enough, we already had four people with services pending. Generally people like to die in clumps during the dog days of summer, and between Christmas and New Year's Day. This year, I guess we're getting the Rosh Hashana Crowd. Or maybe they were just dying for a little nosh. (Who knew?)
Fidel, my younger guinea pig, has come to the age where he is producing extra 'male substance' from his grease gland. Problem being, that it adheres to his ass fur, and is damn near impossible to remove. It's very similar in consistency and color to ear wax. It started when my friend Susan came for a visit, and got him all Excited by giving him lots and lots of baby carrots. Since that time, he's been perfectly boarish. (Sorry). But I really do need to take him for his annual medical with Dr. Gauvin. He doesn't have enormous salty low hangers like Val-Dijon, his beloved elder brother, but then again, he doesn't stink nearly as much, either. I should have known--they stay little for such a short time...
For those who care, I'm getting the long overdue 'oral makeover' this month and next. The first half of my treatments have been completed; bleaching and the gingivectomy. Aside from the pockets of blood and pus that oozed from my gums as they healed, the entire process was actually nearly next to painless. The bleaching however, damn near killed me. Well, actually it was the sensitivity in my teeth that damn near killed me. Eventually it subsided, and I am happy to announce that I can once again eat sorbet without wincing in agony. You'll never know how much I missed it for those two days.
My cousin Milton continues to bravely endure his illness (cancer in the brain, lung, and stomach). His wife says he is starting to lose weight, and has gotten incredibly thin, but still has enough energy to make brief trips to the casino (which is his favorite form of entertainment). I can only stand the place for brief periods at a time, because of all the freaks. I think they comp you extra if you show up with missing teeth and dirty fingernails. Or so it seems.
Since I'm not one to write often, merely excessively, I will close now. Stay tuned for the latest installment (but don't hold your breath). The weather has been delightful, and I have to get out and up in it...