Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Mark 'Plastic Cups' On Our Registry....

WORKING: I've broken three glasses in two days, by the way. One was the last of the tall, thin, skinny ones and another was one of my gold star garage sale specials. They both got elbowed off the counter by the sink. The third, the tallest of the thick everyday glasses, fell off the dish rack onto the counter, which is a ridiculously short distance. But it shattered.
TREV: are we meant to only have plastic?
WORKING: I know, I know, we can't have nice things….
TREV: This is why.
TREV: you're not allowed to use my Guinness glass anymore then. I got that in England.
WORKING: Okaaay. Fine.
WORKING: This is also why I'm too scared to wear my engagement / wedding ring, you know.

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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Tuesday Tidbits

First,welcome back TTC workers . You know, I did end up going to my meeting downtown. I have one meeting a month and I wasn't going to miss it. I walked. It took me 2 1/2 hours there and back. Temperature above 30 and smog warnings. I near died and probably looked like I had. Oh, I could have caught a cab anytime but heat exhaustion makes me ornery, determined, basically stupid. I'd make a wonderful pack mule.

Second, there's a new Charlie and Percy Show:

Catching up here. Matt and Trev discuss...stuff. (And, yes, I've fixed the distortion. Sorry about that).--Trevor

Finally, my heartiest congratulations to Naomi and Dan of Notional Past on the birth of their beautiful little boy, Vincent Daniel. Welcome to the world, Vincent! May these first months be full of wonder and joy. And may your parents blog all about it (in your own time of course, N & D).

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Monday, May 29, 2006

Why Hast Thou Tricked Me?

I was looking forward to this morning. A meeting at the office. A chance to leave my house, to take the streetcar downtown, to sit across the table from real, live people and have actual face-to-face conversations about work.

So of course I wake up to a sudden, massive, city-wide transit strike. See? The Universe wants me to be a recluse.

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Sunday, May 28, 2006

Pre-Marital Gardening

Every spring Trev brings home at least one bag of Wildflower Mix. Then, the following spring he takes the weed wacker to the ‘weeds’.

Today, I intervened. And now, God love him, he’s delicately cutting AROUND the beautiful little white flowers that dot the lawn.

I hear marriage is comprimise. And not laughing at the other person.

* * *
(Covered in sweat, dirt and grass, we stand surveying the freshly mown backyard)

WORKING: It looks nice without the big holes. I should have filled them in a long time ago.
TREV: The dog'll just dig them up again by the end of the day.
WORKING: Trevor A--! Positive thinking!
TREV: Fine. I’m POSITIVE she’ll dig them up by the end of the day.

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Thursday, May 25, 2006

Charlie and Percy - The Sucky One

WORKING: Yay! New Charlie and Percy Show!
TREV: Did you hear it?
WORKING: Just downloading it now.
TREV: It's a new old one
WORKING: Oh, the sucky one?
TREV: It's actually not that bad
WORKING: Oh good.

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Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Wrong Side of the Bed

I woke up all wrong today. Trev got up very early to go to the gym and when he left, the animals decided to start two hours of a bed-shaking game of taunt-and-chase.

Then I managed to make the grossest tasting cup of morning tea ever. I’m still confounded as to what went wrong.

This all launched the Day of Suck. It’s been a long time since I’ve managed to perform this poorly (of course, it was hard to screw up unemployment). Everyone at Head Office is laughing openly at my bad luck, so they can’t be that upset about it. But still, I cringe when the phone rings, preparing my latest round of “I’m so sorry!”

Looking back, I see that I started out all wrong. I should have, I dunno, SHOT the cat and dog. Then woken up properly.

I don’t have a gun though, more’s the pity.

* * *
TREV: I like your blog entry
WORKING: Wow, you're quick! I haven't even signed out of Blogger.
TREV: really? I checked it on a whim.
WORKING: We're so connected.
WORKING: That could be in our vows. "Remember? All those times with the blog? And how I just wrote it? And then, like, you suddenly got an urge to CHECK MY BLOG? Man. That's why we're so meant to be."
TREV: totally, babe.
TREV: "lets download each other."

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Sunday, May 21, 2006


I went to my first Tarot workshop this week. I was a little nervous. Okay, a lot nervous. I felt like I was going to an audition. I’m good at creating intense expectations.

So naturally, I made myself impossibly late. I left myself 15 minutes to cover 2.5 miles on foot, including the Don Valley after a big rainstorm. So the first impression I offered was “Sweat. Red. Out of breath. More sweat.” I actually wiped my hands on my pants to shake hands with the other participants, which is so attractive. Then I perched delicately on the edge of my chair and sipped ginger tea, trying to pretend rivers weren’t pouring down my face.

The workshop was more of a therapy session than I was expecting. I mean, it made sense when I went back and read the description, but in my panic to get there I hadn’t had time to imagine what that meant. Suddenly, I was picking out cards that represented the darkest moments of my past.

The teacher was lovely - warm, welcoming, with obvious experience. He put himself out there as much as any of us did (what happens in Workshop stays in Workshop). I’m sure I was an idiot, over-eager to show off my book learnin’. But he quickly navigated us ‘behind the curtain’. I was surprised by my resistance at first. I thought I was an open book. It was deep, intense, and I have never gotten more out of one card than I did that night. If I close my eyes, I can still picture every detail of every card that I chose.

I think it will make me a better reader.

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Thursday, May 18, 2006

Naturopathic Love

WORKING: I don't know if I should go to the Naturopath or not. It's expensive. I can't think of where to cut back to make up for it.
WORKING: But health is serious, too.
TREV: don't know what to tell you.
WORKING: Some patriarch.
WORKING: You will never have your own compound at this rate.
WORKING: Compound? For multiple wives? D'uh!
TREV: Screw that. Multiple MISTRESSES! That's where it’s at.
WORKING: Ah. A 'cake and eat it too' situation.
WORKING: Sorry, I'm not quite built for polyamorous relationships. It's a miracle I like even one person this much.
TREV: Well, no one said YOU had to go polyamorous….
WORKING: Well, no one said... you... Argh! Never mind! You're a poo-poo head!

WORKING: hey, would you consider making a new banner for my website?
WORKING: It's a little bland right now.
TREV: could do
TREV: I've never made one before but I could give it a shot
WORKING: Something that says "30 year old woman living in Toronto. Who never leaves her house. And talks to her pets more than is healthy."
TREV: hmmm
TREV: not real "sexy-sexy", but I'll come up with something.
WORKING: Okay, how about “formerly-fit Tarot reader who never leaves her house and leaves tea all over the place?”
WORKING: I guess that’s not sexy, either.
WORKING: But I bet this is making you excited to marry me!
TREV: umm... about that polyamorous thing….

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Friday, May 12, 2006


WORKING: I just had an 'oh shit' moment - my new Visa card is good through 02/10. 2010!
WORKING: So, I now have cards that expire in 2010. A decade after the millennium. IT'S ALMOST BEEN A DECADE SINCE THE MILLENNIUM!! Don't you get it?!
TREV: Oh no, I've rubbed off on you.
WORKING: I mean, holy crap!

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Thursday, May 11, 2006

Bird Watching

WORKING: That Cardinal found a mate! No wonder he's finally shut up in the mornings.
TREV: He's all busy
WORKING: I was worried about him. I thought he was going to end up living in his mom's basement this season. Or hanging out with the wrong crowd, those nasty black birds. Or worse - pigeons.
TREV: Hey, don't go making this a black bird thing.
WORKING: My inner bird racism reared its ugly head.
TREV: well, you have to be taught to hate.
WORKING: My father used to shoot pigeons.
TREV: that's where it comes from.
TREV: I remember doing some volunteer work in inner city nests. I learned a great deal. It’s the economy really. And urban sprawl. It’s tough for them to spread their wings. And when they do, they lose hope and commit suicide. Usually by slamming into an office tower.
WORKING: We really should donate to some sort of foundation.
TREV: Well, we should probably eat less eggs.

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Monday, May 08, 2006


Sunday. We were due to have Percy-their-dog to M & A’s wedding photo shoot by 1:45pm. So by 12:00pm, we probably should have been getting cleaned up and organized. Instead, we were still watching Coronation Street and drinking coffee. A mad scramble lead to a scene I despise in coupledom – two people, completely late, having an indiscrete fight in front of all the passersby as they try to juggle a million things into a taxi. Yup, that was us.

Fast-forward three hours. We were home and we’d each downed two of Trev’s burgers, the best, most garlicky burgers ever. We should have been getting dressed for the reception. Instead, I was napping and Trevor was watching TV.

Repeat fight scene.

Luckily, Trevor planted a glass of white in my hand as soon as we arrived at the reception. By the end of the Mizinke Dance, I was feeling just fine. Soon, we were dancing to Feist and Leonard Cohen and Frank Sinatra.

And the fact that every two minutes we had to discretely move towards open windows to release garlicky burger-burps was the funniest thing ever.

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Saturday, May 06, 2006

Tarot and Berlin

The dog and cat are putting on their usual show. Kiwi-the-cat has a new move – he wrapped himself around Charlie’s leg like it was a pole and sunk his claws into her armpit. It’s very effective - big, tough dog needed her mommy to break it up.

I had a crap day yesterday, one of those days in this industry where crisis inevitably hits at 5PM on a Friday. And no one answers his or her cell phones. And here I was due to be at a different location for a different contract, my day not even close to done. By the time I finally got there, I was grumpy and very, very late.

But that’s what I love about working with older people.
“I’m sorry I’m so late,” I said at the door, “I’ve had a horrible day.”
“That’s perfectly alright, my dear!” said the former Opera star who’s never met me. He steered me to the balcony and put a glass of cold wine in my hand and then told me stories about Sarah Polley.

An hour later, I was sitting in a club with a woman who insisted on buying me a Cosmopolitan because she likes “Sex and the City”. She told me about how her mother died in Berlin just after war broke out. She and her brothers had to roam the streets looking for food, trying to avoid gangs. She once had to shake hands with Hitler.

When I later mentioned I study the Tarot, she got this funny look on her face. With a little urging, she told me about how her mother brought a Tarotist fortune-teller to the house because she knew she was dying and wanted to put her mind at ease about her children. The Tarotist sternly and matter-of-factly told the dying mother that this daughter would never be in love, always be poor, and die early.
“I’ve never liked the cards since,” said the woman. No doubt! Who says those things to a dying woman in front of her children? Sixty years later, that’s part of what she remembers of her mother’s death. Psychic my ass - all that reader did was plant the seeds of a self-fulfilling prophecy in the mind of a child experiencing great loss. Jerk. Yeah, I'm talking to you, large Gerta, fortune-teller of Berlin, with the braids wrapped around your head! (Of course you’re long dead by now. Please don’t haunt me.)

I believe there is always choice. Always. Since I'm not psychic, cards are just a tool, a way in, like meditation or prayer. To lift the curtain just a little, to offer insight so the querent has more to work with as they make difficult choices. It’s irresponsible not to present the side of hope.

“I will change your mind about the cards someday,” I said to her as I left. Then, slightly drunk and grumbling self-righteously, I wobbled to the streetcar. Just another crazy out on a Toronto Friday night.

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Friday, May 05, 2006

Six Weird Things About Trevor

(Inspired by Notional Past)

1. Upon coming home from the dog park, I found him standing in the middle of the kitchen, drinking coffee, and very intently reading something on his laptop. I thought to myself, I bet it’s about the new Superman movie. I looked. It was.

2. He says he doesn’t like back rubs. Now, either he doesn’t like how I do it or he’s weird. Obviously the latter, right? That’s what I thought.

3. He finds cooking relaxing. Indeed, all of his vegetables are carefully and uniformly cut. As impeccable as he is, he’s a little iffy with knives. I may yet be marrying Trevor “9-fingers” A--.

4. He craves dark chocolate, cheesecake and Indian food. I crave olives, guacamole, sushi, sauerkraut and olives. Yes, his choices are weird. Mine are fine.

5. He walks too slow. He says I walk too fast. Unless he’s walking the dog – then he leaves me in the dust. So he is capable and I’m right.

6. Few things will upset him, but those few things include Fox News, Bush, ‘stupid people on the subway’, and mean assholes at the dog park. And banks. And overtly Christian people on TV. It’s not that these things are so weird, it’s his reaction. The Grumpy Curmudgeon.

For more Trevor weirdness, see the new The Charlie and Percy Show:

Yeah, I know, its been a while. Over a month in fact, but here we are with a bigger and longer and BETTER podcast. Ok, not much is different, we just rambled longer this time. Matt discusses his issues with his Naturopathic doctor, and Trev puts Charlie on the wild animal diet.

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Thursday, May 04, 2006

It's The Stank! Run For Your Lives!

Day Two of chaos*. Trevor hid my essential work notebook in a bookshelf. I was cooking dinner last night, and since I’m not the most patient person when I have to cook, the conversation went something like this:
(Trev) “What can I do to help?”
“You can get the table ready.”
“The table-table?”
“No! Tsk. We have to watch Amazing Race,” I said in a tone as though the task in front of us was ‘squeezing the dog’s anal gland’ (which I’ll get to).
“What should I do with these?”
I don’t even turn around to see what he’s holding, “I don’t care!”
“Okay! I’ll put them here.”

‘Here’ turned out to be the bookshelf and ‘these’ turned out to be exactly what I needed to have on hand when my boss called this morning.

In other news, I am having a ‘Stank morning’. I took the dog to the park as usual and when I came home I sat at my desk only to notice The Stank. The Stank is a smell. A persistent, oily fish smell caused by a little drop from the dog’s hind end. It hovers, does The Stank.

So I did The Stank Dance, which is where you rip your clothes off like a mad person and sniff every inch, every centimeter of fabric. I mean, this must look insane to the neighbours but The Stank does something to your brain. You simply MUST FIND THE STANK. Then burn the piece of clothing.

Then it occurred to me, as I was ripping off my jeans, I smelled like this at the dog park. I wore The Stank when I had conversations with people! F*******ck!!!

Trevor once took The Stank to work. Probably preemptive payback for when, months later, he would hide my work notebook on the bookshelf.

*Yes, I realize that if my shit wasn’t all over the place to begin with, I’d likely not have these problems. Shut up.

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Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Give Me Simplicity!

WTF is wrong with today? I couldn’t find my own ass with a flashlight if I tried. Big Important Papers that are right in front of my face one minute are completely gone the next. I just yelled at the fax machine. I need a time out.

And here’s the other thing that I still can’t wrap my head around: Dearest 905 Area Code, you tell me something is in Mississauga but it’s not. Know how I know? Because I just spent a farking hour in M@pquest NOT finding it. Do you know where it actually is? Oakville! Completely &#$*@%^ different place!

The thing is, I don’t even think these two places are actually separate in reality. That's how it is in this part of Ontario. But they damn well are on paper. 905’ers, do you even know where you are half the time? You can't possibly.

I know, my Prairie is showing. I miss a place where Elbow is Elbow and Saskatoon is Saskatoon.

And Bienfait is ‘Bean Fate’. Still not sure about that one.

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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Tarot Update

I'm so excited. I just found a GOOD Tarot teacher in Toronto (knock on wood). He comes recommended by one of the best (and highly published) Tarotists in North America and he's offering classes. I'm so excited! Did I say that already?

So you know how I frown, squint, rub my temples, sweat and chew on my fingernails when I'm reading your cards?* Help is at hand! Not a moment too soon.

* I really don't know why I love it so.

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Monday, May 01, 2006

Cards On The Table

WORKING: How did you feel about that (pre-marital financial counseling) meeting this morning?
TREVOR: I felt good. I realize it wasn't a detailed consultation, pretty basic based on our expenses. But it made me feel confident that we're on the right track, that we're being considerate of our situation. I look forward to implementing the budget soon and succeeding at it so we can move on to more advanced things. Mortgages, investments and, perhaps, real estate!
WORKING: Me too.
WORKING: I realize we won’t be able to do the things we really want to do (travel) right now. But this time next year and the year after, things are going to look way sweeter. The money we won't have to put into debt can go into savings.
WORKING: I think I'll still go to that other meeting on Wednesday, see if they suggest even more ways.
TREVOR: we have to be vigilant not to encur any more debt
WORKING: That's huge.
WORKING: it's not like we have a lot of extras. I mean, $0 for a clothing budget? Gulp.
TREVOR: yeah, I know.
WORKING: I guess that just means that if we want extras, we have to earn extra $$. That can be done.
WORKING: It's so weird looking at our numbers. My parents did so much more with so much less when I was growing up. And they had 5 kids….
WORKING: We really do have it pretty easy.
TREVOR: indeed
WORKING: I think this whole budget thing will give me a greater appreciation for the things we have already.
WORKING: Actually watch some of those great movies you have.
WORKING: Read the books we have.
WORKING: Whatever it takes to save up more beer money in the budget. Because dude.... $30 a month?!

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