Saturday, October 28, 2006

I Own Noobs

I sometimes complain that Calgary has no subcultures, no real diversity to speak of. Tonight I was proven wrong. My brother and I went to see the 12th episode ofPure Pwnage, an internet show that has taken (a certain demographic) by storm. We showed up, with pre-purchased tickets thanks to my brother, and there was already a huge line up. The line up consisted mostly of teenaged boys carrying original Nintendo guns and sporting trench coats. They were selling merchandise at the theatre and the crowd was going crazy! Before the show started they had the characters from the show (Pure Pwnage is filmed in Toronto but most of the cast is from Calgary) come out and they brought a bunch of fans to the front to do random things like, oh, I don’t know-spout off the entire dialogue from episode three. These fans were extremely devoted and apparently all had very good memories. Or no life. At one point during the evening I went to the bathroom and for the first time in my movie-going life I walked past the long lineup for the guys bathroom and right into an empty ladies room. Awesome.

It was a good night. The show was great and I got a glimpse into another world. A world where it is okay to wear videogame t-shirts and tight jeans, where it’s normal to pull out your DS at slow points in the film and where most people only knew each other by their Warcraft alias. I felt like I had ventured beyond the borders of Cowtown and I enjoyed the trip.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Death Insurance

There is nothing like running into your own mortality on a Wednesday afternoon. Today Brian and I went to buy life insurance. How very mature and responsible of us. Fortunately, because of Brian we are both eligible for Canadian Bar Association coverage which is very affordable. We each got enough coverage to make sure that if one of us died the other could pay for a funeral, move if necessary and maybe go on a nice trip to Mexico or something. Or if so inclined, bury the other person in the backyard free of charge, sell the house and move to Europe. Whatever helps with the grief.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Same Same Same Same Same Same

Things have been sort of crappy lately. I don't know whether I am going through some kind of quarter life crisis of if I'm just getting older but I've felt so subdued. I feel a little trapped and a little disappointed. I have a good life - I love my job, I have a husband who I love and who I love back, I have a nice house and a good family. I'm active and although I don't have many friends who live nearby I do have a handful and I certainly have some wonderful long distance friends. And all I can seem to think is, "Is this it? Is this my life?"

I'll be the first to admit that for most of my life I carried some very grand ideas of how my life would look. A famous writer, living on the intellectual cutting edge and inspiring the masses to challenge the status quo, cool. Never did I imagine a quiet, normal, blissful existence.

I find myself feeling suffocated by the sameness of it all. I live in a white-bred city where homogeneity runs rampant. I have a terrible case of the travel bug and I don't have the finances to cure it. My weekdays, from week to week, look frighteningly similar to one another. I need something, but I don't know what.

I've considered taking a vacation alone (since Brian cannot possible give up the time) but know that once again, I have too much debt to start doing that. And besides, I would prefer to travel with someone. I am trying to make new friends by participating in all sorts of activities. I meet people that I like but they already seem to have a large group of their own friends and whatever particular friend niche I might occupy, has already been filled. I run like mad to make myself feel good. I do ballet and I try to be happy...and sometimes it works.

I feel guilty for feeling this way sometimes because I know that the world is full of people who would love to have my life. The warmth, the love and the possibilities. The security.

How to I rectify the ideas, however unrealistic, with the reality? How do I bring myself to accept all that is good in my life while setting out to change what isn't? How do I make myself happy without making myself sick?

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Flammable but fitted...

Sure, this week has seen a nuclear test in North Korea, the loss of Habeus Corpus rights in the U and the Canadian government thumbing their collective noses at the developing world's health by refusing to support the addition of asbestos to the Rotterdam list but I've got something a little more pressing to consider.


Now, I work at an office that requires business wear and I like that. What I don't like is wearing pantyhose with waists so high that my options are to roll them down so it looks like I have a sleeping wiener dog wrapped around my waist or to tug them up so high that they actually tuck up into my bra. Pictures that for a second...exactly. Not pretty and I can assure you, definitely not comfortable. If I buy them one size shorter the crotch hangs so low that I waddle when I walk, K-Fed style. So, last week when I saw a par of low rise pantyhose I naturally grabbed them, boxed out and defended the stock from any other long-crotched ladies who might dive into my stash.

This morning I got dressed and opened up the package, narely breathing with all the possibility that existed in those flaccid nylon tubes. And? They fit like a glove. The crotch is exactly where it should be. My bra contains only what it should. All is right with the world.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Humility in a Barbie Bicycle Helmet...and Skates

I had my first Special Olympics figure skating practice today and it went really well. Well as in I didn't fall on my ass. Some of the athletes are very good and some of them are just learning to skate. I've managed to rope Brian into coaching Special Olympics as well so he starts basketball tomorrow night. I was feeling pretty lousy before I went to practice and of course, like always, Special Olympics took care of that. I left feeling uplifted and excited for the rest of the season. The thing about Special Olympics is that I spend a lot of time laughing. Not at the athletes but with them...they are so good at laughing and they never do it with any ill intent. They just genuinely find themselves funny and I am more able to laugh at myself when I'm with them. And sometimes, just sometimes, I laugh at them too...I'm only human.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Precious Visit

On Thursday we went to see Alexander McCall Smith do a reading. We have both been reading his books for the last year or so and really enjoy them. He writes a lot about Botswana, a place we have visited and are familiar with. There are so many shared interests and history between myself and Smith that I feel a sense of kinship with him. He is from Scotland (and now lives in Edinburgh) and grew up in Africa, much like my mother. He studied law (as does my husband), writes from a woman's perspective (I am a woman...okay, I'm reaching with that one) and writes children's books. To top it off, he did his reading at KNOX United Church. Weird, huh?

So I was happy - I got to hear McCall Smith and better yet I got to hear him talking to Eleanor Wachtel as the reading will be featured on CBC's Writers and Company. Life is good.

Thursday, October 05, 2006


Do you remember Jump Rope for Heart? I remember when I was young we used to do it every year and every year I loved it. The t-shirt, the super cool knee-high athletic socks (which eventually were used to launch stinkbombs into the boys change room - now why couldn't I enter that in the science fair?) and those beaded-skipping ropes like muticoloured knuckle-bones nipping at your legs every time you stopped to take a breather.

Today we went to a charter school (just like a private school except it's publicly funded) for a Jump program launch. The school focuses on athletics, academics and arts...sort of like what regular schools used to focus on. The Jump program is celebrating its (wait for it...this is going to make you feel old...) 25th anniversary this year. The kids did a skipping demo and presented the Heart and Stroke Foundation with a cheque for $40,000. Wow.

The kids were really happy and excited about raising so much money. They were proud of themselves and their teacher and weren't the least bit afraid of talking to the reporters and camera men who covered the event.

Which made me wonder, at what point exactly does everything change? At what point do people get annoyed of not-for-profits asking for money? When do we become so self-aware that we would rather stay quiet than risk saying the wrong thing? When does it stop being "cool" to care? At what point in our lives did we stop skipping?

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Me and the Archbishop

I'm a ballerina! Okay, so not exactly but last night was my second ballet class and I have to say that even I noticed an improvement in my pirouette. I am having such a blast and since I have never taken ballet before (as a young girl I could never have withstood the repetitiveness, the pinkness of it all and of course - the rules) but I thought I would give it a try and I'm glad. I have little pink shoes and the teacher is really great and I have sore muscles where I didn't know I even had muscles.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Live Show

Last night we went to see Blue October - it was an awesome show. Justin Furstenfeld was one of the most theatrical and engaging performers I have ever watched. Every song that came on was better than the one before it and I know this must be true because I was completely sober.

In sort of related news, my best friend's band, Keating, has just released their second album. Take a listen and if you like it, request the single "Much to Say"...most radio stations have it.