Monthly Archives: June 2015

Finished this book: Firefly Summer (by Maeve Binchy)

Picture of the cover of Firefly Summer by Maeve Binchy.

Picture of the cover of Firefly Summer by Maeve Binchy.

So after reading four Game of Thrones books in a row, I craved something kind. Something gentle. Something that would let me float along the story instead making me flinch. Maeve Binchy is one of my go-to authors when I’m in that mood, so I re-read Firefly Summer over the weekend. One of the things I really appreciate about Binchy is how so many of her characters are basically just regular people trying to live good lives and get along with each other. Continue reading

Finished these books: Game of Thrones 1 to 4 (by George R. R. Martin)

The first four Game of Thrones books.

The first four Game of Thrones books.

–Content warning: references to (but no details about) sexual violence–

These books are both awesome and awful. Awesome because Martin does a great job at inventing an elaborate world, a convoluted plot, (mostly) believable characters, and manages it all with great internal consistency. Awful because the world he has invented is truly horrifically misogynist and violent. Continue reading

Ringing In My Birthday

DSC_0019

Some of the gear I have to return today

Last night I deejayed at a great little non-licensed venue for an event showcasing the work of women and non-binary trans people. There were four artists performing, and L. and I deejayed before, after, and between the other performers. This is the first time either of us has deejayed without a more experienced DJ to mentor, guide, and rescue us. We both messed up in various places, Continue reading

Old Dogs: When the News is Good

The Brindle Dog when she was a pup.

The Brindle Dog when she was a pup.

The Brindle Dog now at eleven years old.

The Brindle Dog now at eleven years old.

 

 

———————————————————————————————————————————————

My ex and I first met the Brindle Dog when she was two weeks old. Her mom Asja and dad Tommy were KNPV dogs, and through a complicated backstory, we ended up paying two hundred euros for a pup from this litter because Tommy’s owner felt sorry for us.

We visited the Brindle Dog and her littermates every week until we could take her home. When she was four weeks old, we chose her for three reasons: she was toddling around exploring more adventurously than her siblings, she had a lovely golden stripe running down the inside of her right front leg, and when my ex picked her up to cuddle her, she fell asleep all limp and trusting in her new papa’s arms. Continue reading

Walking the Dogs: Mud and Mosquitoes

The Fluffy Dog in his wading pool, with gunk in his fur and in the water.

The Fluffy Dog in his wading pool, with gunk in his fur and in the water.

My dogs could have a better life, I know. Mostly, they laze around waiting for something interesting to happen. We don’t do flyball or Schutzhund or agility or any other formal training. The Fluffy Dog goes to daycare one day a week, but the Brindle Dog doesn’t even get that. I try to take them each on a long walk every day but that depends on my internal stuff (stress, anxiety, depression) and my external stuff (work, physical health).

But when we do go for those long walks—or even for short ones—I try to let them do what they want. Continue reading

Father’s Day: Not Always “Happy”

Father’s Day is hard for so many people. I imagine this day must be as bitter for my estranged father as it is for me. At least I hope it is as bitter for him, because that might mean that he still cares and that one day we might have a relationship again.

Father’s Day is hard for people whose dad is dead, for dads whose kids are dead, for the men who want to be dads but can’t be, for the kids and dads who are separated from each other, for people whose dads were / are abusive, for kids who never knew their deadbeat dads but are forced by the teacher to make a card for Daddy anyway (true story from a colleague), for the people whose dads are frankly nothing to celebrate.

I know my dad used to love me. I hope he still does. As much as I hate this estrangement, it’s better than dealing with how he and his wife were treating me. But Father’s Day is still bitter because I miss him, and our time for reconciliation gets shorter each year.

Children: To Hit or Not to Hit? (spoiler: NOT!)

The text in this image can be found at the bottom of the post.

Children Learn What They Live poem by Dorothy Law Nolte from http://www.docstoc.com/docs/158159649/Children-Learn-What-They-Live

Another facebook friend is advocating hitting children. In the wake of another local bullying incident, my news feed is once again spattered with variations on the meme of “If there was more of THIS {image of a child being spanked}, there’d be less of THIS {image of young criminals*}.” Continue reading

Walking the Dogs: Pride Fest weekend

A picture of Pride at The Forks, shamelessly stolen from www.pridewinnipeg.com. The attribution is Cynthia Bettencourt (at the bottom right).

A picture of Pride at The Forks, shamelessly stolen from http://www.pridewinnipeg.com. The attribution is Cynthia Bettencourt (at the bottom right).

I was planning on a quiet couple of days, but there was so much going on in Winnipeg last weekend! Bike Week, Jazz Fest, Pride, FIFA, farmer’s markets, parades and art openings and films and picnics and concerts, oh my! Plus in my own life, my dear friend got a new dog, and one of my French cousins whom I haven’t seen in ages was stopping by on his way across Canada to go pick cherries in the Okanagan. So much for a quiet weekend! Suddenly there was so much choice! New dog! Interesting cousin! House music at the Pyramid! Pride Fest and market and music at the Forks! Thunderstorms and BBQs! Continue reading

Walking the Dogs (Stress Management)

Picture of a picnic table and some trees with late afternoon sun coming through them.

Took this pic on a walk in the Exchange last week.

I resist doing the things that are good for me. I hate the little voice that snarls and nags at me to eat well, exercise, keep my house clean, be polite, stand up straight, be silent, be nice, keep up appearances, worry about what the neighbours will think, don’t rock the boat. That fucking awful voice from the past mixing up the things that would really work for me with the things that harm and crush and make a life small. Continue reading

Saw this documentary: The Fake Case (Ai Weiwei)

 

Ad for the Ai Weiwei documentary.

Picture taken from the Cinematheque guide.

Ai Weiwei’s bravery makes me squirm.

I do try to be courageous and speak out against injustice and be a witness, but as Yoda says “Do. Or do not. There is no try.” Ai Weiwei gives a lot of thought to his art and politics, but when pivotal moments arrive, he does not pause to think; he simply acts in accordance with his own beliefs and ethics. Continue reading

Purple Hair and Frankenstein

Picture of purple and grey hair.

The hair in question.

Someone grabbed my purse while I stood in line at Tim Horton’s today with my bromate. Well, not a grab, really, more of a tug on the strap. I whipped my head around, ready for confrontation, and a very young white woman said “Hey, I just wanted to compliment you on your hair.” I checked my purse (still zipped shut) (who the hell touches someone’s PURSE to get their attention?) Continue reading

Dog Meat for Dinner?

A picture of a black dog and her nursing puppies.

The Brindle Dog with her mom and siblings. Not snacks despite how plump and juicy they all seem.

“But think of the sweet PUPPIEEEES!!”

Of course I don’t want dog meat for dinner. But it makes me spitting mad when people who eagerly devour pigs and cows get all sentimental about others eating dogs. Because: Continue reading

Lottery Thoughts

DSC_0169[1]

The tickets I bought to take a picture to tell you how seldom I buy the tickets.

C. stopped by my desk at work today to say hi and ask how my weekend was. I hesitated, partly to admire C.’s clothes, and partly because I was in a painkiller-induced haze. “My weekend was fine,” I squinted, trying to remember. “But now I’m bitchy and crampy. When I grow up, I want to have no cramps and I want to win the lottery.” Continue reading