Thursday, October 29, 2009

"I'm just gonna do this, and if your leg gets in the way, it's your own fault"

My girls were exactly what I thought little boys were like. Then my boy showed up and has been exactly what I thought the cross between a poltergeist (the destructive spectre, not creepy movie version); that hungry weasel that regularly slurps up and down Foghorn Leghorn's drumstick; and a pinball machine on multi-ball would be. It's like he's instantly everywhere with Destructive Intent. He doesn't go anywhere where he's not starting off the conversation swinging.

After teaching each of our two "creative" and "active" daughters for two years each, we brought our son in to Mrs G, the Nursery School / Kindergarten Teacher (that is not a short-form, or an alias, everyone actually calls her Mrs G). We said "Here! CYA" and ran. Cue "ricochet" sound, and maniacal laughter for two as we tore down the hall.

She's got two years to fix him.

Tonight, I observed the following in the kitchen:

#1 engaging in bear-hug-like embrace of #2, such that both were collapsing to the ground, with #3 taking full advantage of by kidney-punching them both all the way down. All were laughing (you know, until they're not)

She's got a bit of a tough nut to crack, but I'm sure that there's no connection to the fact that she's retiring next year.

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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Out of Water

I was born at a very young age in a galaxy far, far away – not a Ford Galaxie, that's probably where I was conceived (did you see what I did there? Ford actually made the Galaxie, and they existed at the time of my conception. That's called "research".) Actually, it wasn't all that long ago, and it was less than a mile from where I sit right now (crap, it's more like 5 km. What is that in dog years? I'm tired of research). I've lived here about 99% of my life (sunovabich, you're going to make me calculate this, aren't you? K: 3/41=7% of my life *not* living here. I'll take this opportunity to say "look waaaay up. What does that banner say?")*

Alright, so you'd think I belong here. But some of the typical conduct of my fellow citizens leaves me flummoxed. Here are but a few of the things that highlight how I may not belong here.


  • Don't vacate the city for the lake every summer. Yes, I need a second whole household to maintain and manage, because clearly I have too much time & money
  • Hate the Guess Who. As in, *hate*. Can't stress this enough. It may or may not be that I've manufactured this entire post in order to be able to state that.
  • Don't hate Toronto. More indifferent. And pity. They *so* want to be a world city. Not going to happen. This is Canada. That would be grandstanding.
  • Didn't swoon over IKEA's announcement to open here (disclosure: already own everything, which makes me a good, cheap Winnipegonian; disclosure #2: I'll be there - with my paycheque in hand – the day they open; disclosure #3: I may have emailed them about it back in the day)
  • Don't hijack any discussion of Neil Young with "he's from Winnipeg, you know". He left. I'm over it.
  • Know where my turn signal lever is and know how to use it. And do. But not for hours at a time.
  • Can use an acceleration lane.
  • Don't make monthly shopping trips to Grand Forks (disclosure: Girls' GFF Weekend. Not my choice destination, but hey, I can spend money. And hey, it's my GFFs!)
  • Don't pine for the Jets and hyperventilate when the league utters the word "expansion". They're gone. Get over it. In fact the only *possible* way to get them back is to let them go, move on and grow as a community until we earn them on our own merit. And for the love of Christmas, don't fucking call them "The Jets" if that miraculously happens. How about: The Wholesalers? Eh? Eh? Nice ring to it.

I've got about 15 or 200 more ways that I don't or haven't fit in to the various groups and communities I am either forced to, or really want to be a part of. What of you?

*And, ok further: a goodly chunk was spent just outside the city – some might call it "the country" – but really, our community was here, as it sure as hell wasn't out there. I have a long history of not fitting in. Also: damn right I double count that time as time toward my God-given right ability to call myself a country-girl. It probably landed me a husband, so I can't let it go now.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Very Small Rocks

I had a dream the other night that I was in my parents' garden and they rolled a giant rock out of it and it rolled right at me. I dodged it once, but then it rolled back, right on top of me. Just as I was yelling "HELP!" they looked up and I woke up. I always wake up before the worst part of a dream – even those that don't involve my own demise.

So I woke up and I immediately began thinking "what the hell was THAT?"

I don't usually ponder the meanings of my dreams. I've had relatively few that I could figure out even if I tried. The most vivid was one I had as a child – about four. A large crowd of people – including my mother, my father and me – were running in a field, being chased by a herd of buffalo. The sky was dark with a looming storm. My mother and father were at the front of this crowd and tossing me back and forth between them. My mother was wearing a green vinyl trench coat. Did I mention they were newly separated at the time? I think it was a warning about my aversion to crowds. And buffalo.

The only other one I can recall offhand was about a former boss, whom I respect deeply. I had an image of him in a bathtub having been electrocuted with a toaster. That one freaked me out. So I asked my mom what death meant in dreams. She assured me that it was all about change, which kind of made sense, since we had just acquired a new toaster at the kitchenette. I failed to mention the bathtub and the nakedness. I don't want to know what that meant. (He's alive and well, by the way. And clothed, I presume.)

Now, I often don't pick up on metaphors and deeper meanings unless they are explained to me in very small words (high-school English was a bitch), but I sort of decided that the big giant rock was something that was overwhelming me.

I discussed this with Max, who, after mocking me soundly about dreaming about giant rocks (that's just how we roll – HAW!), analyzed – probably correctly – that may I have some difficulty in breaking down problems/issues into manageable pieces. It's all or nothing. Give'er pig. Go big or go home. And then, bleh... I'm done. Burned out. But hey! I'm done, so I can just rest. This MO would often work out just fine in my pre-child years, in an apartment, but now it does not serve me well. There is no rest, there's just the next project or task or crisis (did you know I made a whole freaking RAGGEDY ANN doll? Embroidery and everything?) So I'll consider it. Because, hey, I like rest as much as the next guy. Maybe more.

And what the hell is up with the fucking brain anyway? Why can't it just say "HEY! YOUR PARENTS ARE SEPARATING!" or "HEY! YOU'RE MORE WORRIED THAN YOU THINK ABOUT THE CHANGES AT WORK!" or


I can't help but note that if I were to break up this "rock" into manageable "pieces" that a pile of gravel that size would still kill me. But maybe I take the metaphor too far.

I also note that Max wasn't in this dream, and have concluded that he must have been holding the rock back, and is actually the reason I was able to wake up at all.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Harmzie's Den of Unimaginable Pleasures

Unimaginable, because I couldn't possibly make this shit up...

I found this little (pen is included for scale [See what I did there? I made sure to include the space in "pen is"]) gem whilst tidying up the toys tonight:

That's a Playmobil monkey on a pig. I don't think it's a Playmobil pig, because it's squishy (although the monkey is too, but I know for a fact that it's a Playmobil monkey).
It's not a "Tequila Pigs" pig either, because those were lost/destroyed/banished after the Great Tequila Pigs Incident of 2003 (relax did not involve children this time) (did, however, involve Tequila).
But the scene reminded me of another that I found a while back - and also thought to take a picture of, mostly because the position of the eye was *so* perfect. OK, I'm lying. It's because Poochie and Lisa/Betty/Frances (her name changes regularly) were caught taking the world in a love embrace and firing all of their guns at once.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Roughing It

I'm stuck out here in the middle of The Gap with a laptop from Pioneer days (seriously – the mouse doesn't work. Do you know how much you use the mouse on a computer? A lot. A hell of a lot), so I thought I'd share a little about life on the road. With three kids.

Let me tell you those pioneers had it easy simply because, sure they couldn't tie up kids for hours on end with a DVD player that would plug into the horse's butt, but they COULD threaten beatings, or typhoid, or mountain lions. I'm not allowed to do that. All I've got is "finish your kids' meal or I'll eat the Oreo cookie treat myself". Even that, in the wrong context could land me in jail for child depravation these days. And they know it.

So we embarked on a whirlwind road trip to Calgary for Thanksgiving. Roughing it in the worst way. We drove a whole 10 hours and landed in Medicine Hat at a hotel campsite of Max's choosing (and reserving). The plan was to pitch camp and blow off a little kid steam at the waterslide. It was a brutally rough test of endurance, as the hot-tub was not working, so as Max & the kids partook in only two full sized waterslides, I was forced to take on the body-temperature swimming pool. It was excruciating. Then, the place that we camped only had glass French doors between the king-sized bed and the rest of the suite. And they didn't even latch shut. Also, the TV in the bathroom was only 19 inches (never mind that there were only three TVs! Come on! There are five of us!) AND the dual shower heads had to be turned on separately. I swear I would rather have beat my laundry on a rock. Or maybe marble, like the floors and counters in there. Then I had to endure a Japanese Hot-Stone massage that Max had booked for me, when really I just wanted to bake pretzels and tan racoon hides over the campfire with the children. No, really. But endure it I did. It was also excruciating.

After I showered in the spa's shower with only four jets on top of the regular overhead shower, we de-camped and proceeded to Calgary where we weren't allowed to demonstrate our stupendous roughing it skills, and were forced to accept overwhelming hospitality and generosity from our brother and sister-in-law. Seriously. We had to sleep in our own room! With the kids on a whole other floor! And visit and re-connect with other adults! Family adults! I know.

But Thanksgiving dinner made all the roughing it totally worth it. My niece made her very first all-on-her-own Thanksgiving dinner. The only thing I had to endure about that was the painful awe and inspiration watching her pull it all together flawlessly (actually, I only saw the finale. She had it so together that 99% of it was done for extra awe and inspiration). Also, it was delicious. And the company was wonderful. And they had a playroom with a plexi-glass door. That LATCHED! The pioneers had nothing on that.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Note I said "Thanksgiving" and not "Canadian Thanksgiving". You're a big kid and can figure it out.

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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Magic Star Morello

I'm tootling about my day, emailing here, inspecting there, throw in a meeting or two for good measure, sign some crap. About half way through the day, I realize I've had the theme song to "My Little Pony" crammed in as a running sound track ALL DAY LONG (I guess it's more of a jingle than a theme song, but at this point, it's semantics)

As bad as that is, it is nowhere near as annoying as once you notice it and can't get rid of it. Something had to be done.

I thought for a moment that maybe if I forced a completely different kind of song on myself... Let's see, how about some Rage Against The Machine? Excellent choice!

No matter how hard you try, you can't stop us now
No matter how hard you try, you can't stop us now

Very nice. Working like a charm. Until:

We're the renegades of funk
We're the renegades of … My Little Pony, My Little Pony…

And that, officers, is why I had to bring the flame thrower in to take out the MLP aisle. It just had to stop. You can see my point.

"Yes ma'am. Sorry to keep you, ma'am"

If there is a god, I have now passed this fucking ear worm on to you and I can proceed at peace.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009


We were watching Wimbledon.

I use the term "we" a little loosely. Basically, I was aware it was on. Despite my abhorrence for all things sports, I DO try to make an effort to remain engaged. It is a little bit interesting. Plus, I do have a deep respect for and fascination with the business, physiology and psychology of sports. That someone can bring themselves up to that level, both physically and mentally (it takes both, apparently).

So we were watching Wimbledon, and I looked up from my crossword/sudorku at some point and made some snide comment about Roger Federer being some kind of an asshole or something. Max – who normally jumps right in with the celebrity bashing – indignantly said "actually, I've heard he's quite the gentleman and sportsman". I was unable to argue the statement, as my position was based merely on the usually robust assumption that all celebrities (from all walks) are assholes. I am fully aware that this is a rule which is full of exceptions, and am quick to back down when one is presented, but usually, I just don't give a flying crap either way.

But it did send me off on a train of thought… Wow. He sure seems smitten [I don't know if it's obvious, but the thought process from here on was pretty much entirely internal] with Roger Federer. And it reminded me of a Mad TV skit (which I can't find, so it's possible I made this whole part up) where a man finds his wife in bed with Brian Bosworth and instead of freaking out, he is totally jazzed by the fact that his wife is FUCKING BRIAN BOSWORTH!!! And he wants pictures and autographs – ends up creeping out the Boz*, and pissing off his wife because, hello! Earth to jealous husband! Fight for me!

So jumping another step (naturally), suddenly I'm thinking of the Freebie Five. Nen did (a) Your Freebie Five; (b) the Freebie Five I'd Switch Teams For; (c) most recently, Time Machine Freebie Five. The next logical step is…

[drum roll please]

Freebie Five for my spouse! Brilliant! This is so brilliant that I can't believe it hasn't been done yet. I'm so excited. Yay! I am totally pursuing this.

That night, as the house is settling down, I ask (I even cite the Mad TV skit, so it's not TOTALLY out of the blue – I'm THAT prepared): "Who would your Freebie Five for me be?"


"You know, who would it be a feather in YOUR cap if *I* were to sleep with them?"

He is clearly not playing the game, and in fact, is offended. "What the hell is wrong with you? That list would obviously be zero" (also obviously too flustered to deal with grammar)

Now it is ME who is offended "UGH! You have no imagination. Yes, I'm going to take your 'list' and run around the continent (hey! I've got lots of airmiles!) hunting down these 'catches' because I've got this permission slip from my husband, so it's ok as long as I get pictures and an autograph that says 'yer wife's a tiger in the sack, thanks dude'. It took me six months land a date with YOU"

He rolled his eyes at me and was silent for a very long time as I frittered away on my sudorku "OK fine… How about Stephen Hawking. And maybe Homer Simpson"

"you're an asshole. Homer Simpson wouldn't count because he's all TWO DIMENSIONAL"

*scroll down to "Personal Life" for a local connection. I recall seeing it on the news, so it MUST be true!

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