Showing posts from March, 2013

Mondays on the Margins: Sadness and the People You Love

I've abandoned Scintilla for the moment. I will finish when I can, and I'm loving reading other peoples' posts, but right now it's just choking me with performance anxiety and making me feel like maybe I'm just not an interesting enough person to HAVE this many bloggable stories about my life. I'm still in a low-grade reading rut. To Bunnyslippers: I have started reading Good Omens and I am looking upon it and finding it good. To whoever asked me what I thought about The Fault in our Stars (Jenny?): it's on my bedside pile. I read another Dexter novel yesterday, thinking something light would be good. If you haven't watched or read Dexter, or if you've only watched it and you're thinking that calling it light is cracked in the head, the books actually are pretty light. Unfortunately, I'm starting to feel like they're light (and delicious) in a junk food kind of way. I start out reading each one and it's pleasing to the palate -

Scintilla Day 6, on Day 7, skipping Days 4 and 5 because I'm badass like that

That's right. I'm knocking my Scintilla experience even further askew.  2. Write about a chance meeting that has stayed with you ever since. After I finished my Master's Degree but before I figured out what to do next, we moved to Toronto for Matt's first job. We didn't have a lot of money, and the place we found was great - the main floor of a house lovingly refinished by a really great contractor who we became friendly with - but in a sort of crappy part of town. Which was fine - we were youngish and had no kids and I never actually felt unsafe. We just said we lived in a full-service neighbourhood - you could get a gyro, a joint and a blowjob without having to walk more than a block in any direction. We had a little truck that Matt used to go to work every day, so I took the subway or walked everywhere. Our front door was only two houses away from Dundas West, which I would walk down pretty much every day, to the No Frills for groceries, to the laundromat

Scintilla Day 3: Finding my voice

Scintilla Day 3:  B:   Talk about a time when you were driving and you sang in the car, all alone. Why do you remember this song and that stretch of road? I'm finding it difficult to get any real traction on the prompts this year. Last year I had to reach but it still felt within my grasp; this year I'm just starting to emerge from weeks of leaden, joyless trudging, and I'm wondering if maybe I'm just not up to this right now. I'm torn between not wanting to submit what feels like mediocre splattering and wondering if just making the effort will help me move out of the Slough of Despond. I don't think I drive anywhere alone without singing. Once a year I drive four or five hours to Barrie to visit my best friend, and I think I usually choose the music for the drive before I decide what clothes to bring. Angus and I used to measure how long it took to drive to somebody's house by how many times we could sing the Spiderman theme song before we got there

Scintilla Day 2: Instructions

Prompt 2: Tell a story about something interesting (anything!) that happened to you, but tell it in the form of an instruction manual. ***************** Step 1: Find yourself living in Toronto with your husband of a few months, working for a cool little independent bookstore, finally getting treatment for depression which will surely solve all of those problems in short order and forever (insert slightly bitter snort). Step 2: Figure things are going pretty well and it would be a good thing to find a way to give back to the community. Step 3: See an ad for PAL-Reading Services in the paper. Step 4: Feel struck to the core with the conviction that this was Meant To Be in every possible way - Blind People who are Tragically Denied the Joys of the Written Word (because you don't know Braille, or there aren't enough books in Braille, or something!), LET ME BE YOUR READER! Step 5: Go in for a short test. Be accepted with alacrity and praise despite a slight quibble ove

Late to the party

Scintilla started yesterday. I spent yesterday afternoon seeing a mediocre movie with my kids and yesterday evening having an absolutely stellar drunkfest with my girlfriend. So it's all good. Because Scintilla doesn't judge, yo. When you roll in late with a hangover, Scintilla rolls its eyes, tosses you an Advil and lets you pull up a chair. Or so I'm choosing to believe, particularly since this beloved visage is one of its threefold faces (part of its threefold face? Gah. There's three faces, hers is one of 'em. Geez.) So I'm late. And stuck. Prompt A: Tell a story about a time you got drunk before you were legally old enough to do so. Prompt B: Tell a story set at your first job. I considered telling the story about when my friend Kim and I got drunk while babysitting my Mom's friend's son Clifton but it would appear that my other friend Kim  has already written that post. Damn (I still love your face, Kim).  My first job was cleaning roo

Mondays on the Margins: We Need to Talk About This Goddamned Kevin Book

Warning: here be spoilers . This could be alternately titled My Big Fat Spoiler-y Review of We Need to Talk About Kevin, because I can't talk about this book without delving into the entirety of my experience with it. I think/hope enough people expressed to me either their advice that I not read it (indicating that they had) or their vehement desire never to read it themselves that everyone won't run screaming, but it won't be the first or last time I've just sat here talking to myself. So. We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver. Here is the picture of Lionel Shriver (from Google images) that was on the back flap of the edition I was reading: It's an odd picture, isn't it? It's not terribly well-composed - on the book flap it's really hard to tell where her hair ends and the wrought iron begins. And that expression - would you call it sardonic? I think I would. I tend to flip to the back and gaze at the author photos every few pages whi

Surly Thursday or a Reasonable Facsimile

Yeah, I'm faking it because you can't be authentically surly when you're dead inside, but Clara was looking forward to surliness and I adore Clara and I'm stalled in this assignment until my husband gets home and shows me how to make a concept map in Powerpoint. Things that would make me surly if I still had feelings: When the Rideau Canal was still open, Alan Neal was talking on CBC about the no-pickup-hockey-games rule that the National Capital Commission instituted. The reasons given were 1) it's dangerous and disruptive with so many people skating and, more importantly 2)the kind of 'static weight' generated by these games, as opposed to the 'moving weight' of people simply skating could cause the ice to sink and result in dangerous skating conditions. Neal concluded the piece with "what do you think"? What do they think? Who gives a crap what they think? Are you going to ask them what they think about the rule about not knocking

So I (still) have a strange relationship with numbers

My husband's in China (on what I just realized is his birthday), four of the five bulbs in my kitchen light fixture are burnt out and we're out of milk. I bought a treadmill this morning and now I can't get it out of the van until my husband comes home. I'm too dispirited to even work up a decent head of surliness, but I did manage to go in and shelve books today, so I'm replaying a post from very early in my blogging days. I was working in the school library this morning. I do the basic library stuff -- check books in and out, catalogue new books, fix hurt books, but mostly I shelve. it's sort of tedious and repetitive and back-breaking, especially the lower shelves, but after a while it becomes sort of a Zen exercise. It's kind of interesting seeing the books that go out and come back on a regular basis (Harry Potter and Geronimo Stilton in fiction, fast vehicles and puppy and kitten books in non-fiction), or putting back one that I haven't seen

Mondays on the Margins: Book....Stuff

There are a few ways I can tell I'm depressed if I'm not on-the-surface aware of it - you know how things just become the new normal and it seems like it's always been this way: I can't make decisions - trying to decide what to buy or cook for the week sends me into a tailspin, I don't try to watch tv because I know the list of shows on the pvr will just blur into an inchoate mass, and if I listen to music while I'm working out I can't pick a playlist, I just listen to songs alphabetically; I find myself sobbing while lifting weights and listening to The Song of Bernadette; and some of the joy goes out of reading. It gets really hard to review books in this state, because I kind of feel like I have to concurrently review my mood, or I'm not being fair to the book (I realize no one's FORCING me to review books, or PAYING me to review books, or really even ASKING me to review books, so this is a matter of no urgency. Nevertheless.) There are still bo