Archive | May, 2010

the need to flee

31 May

the first of many great escapes.

i should be happy. i’m “newly single”, which is admittedly a difficult situation, but i’m cautiously excited about imagining a new life. i’ve got a steady paycheque from a job i enjoy. summer is approaching – one of the lesser seasons imho, but beautiful nonetheless. i’ve got some holidays + a massive family reunion in the near future, + a dear friend is moving to my city in 3 months. a trip back home to the west coast is a distinct possibility before september rolls around. i’m at the culling-and-cleaning stage of the search for a new apartment. and there isn’t much danger of having to see my partner in crime of 8-ish years with his new love interest(s), as he’s currently 9000km away. (when the dude leaves, he leaves.) on many counts, things are looking up: my life is full of possibility.

yet i feel like running. i want nothing more than to abandon this life as i know it + flee for parts unknown. this is a tendency i’ve had as long as i can remember: when the going gets tough, i get going. maybe it originated with the panic attacks in my childhood; wanting to run from the anxiety and the fear. the desire to just do something, to burn off the excess energy, to feel productive and distracted from the unpleasantness. it’s how i ended up in los angeles 11 years go, how i ended up in france so many times the past few years. each of those times, i learned some valuable lessons, and had some wonderful experiences that added richness and depth to my life and to my understanding of myself and the world around me. yet i also recognise them for what they were: distractions. sometimes we run to avoid having to deal with things that we simply aren’t prepared to process yet. the key is knowing that, and then coming back to those issues later on when we’re better equipped to deal with them.

this time, though, it’s simpler than that: more than a mere distraction, it’s easier to start fresh in a new environment (see, my hpb had the right idea). getting away from the drama, the gossip, the questions, + the daily reminders of a life that no longer exists. it’s hard enough learning to be a single gal again; doing so in the midst of the life that used to be is that much harder.

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my general impression

26 May

chalk it up to personal experience. unfortunately.

big ole question mark

23 May

nose to snout

21 May

it was historic.

a few weeks ago i bought annie one of those little plastic hamster balls. i felt guilty about not having her out as much as she should. apparently her wild brothers and sisters run up to 5 miles a night, but what’s an urban hamster to do? she’s too small for the regular ones but i found one specifically for dwarf hamsters – a tiny little orange one. she loves it. (and so do i. never underestimate the entertainment value of a pet.)

so yesterday as annie was rolling around on the carpet, i set edie down nearby. annie came rolling right up to edie, crashing into her backside. she kept bumping up against her, trying to get a closer look. in return, edie curled up into the tightest ball imaginable and shot out her spines. she sat there like that, huffing and puffing, for a good 5 minutes, while annie just kept smashing into her.

when i scooped edie up a few minutes later, and held her right in front of the ball, she touched her snout to the little slat where annie’s nose was twitching wildly; nobody attacked nor retreated. i’m sure they are totally BFFs now. srsly.

lacklustre

20 May

one of my favourite books. makes me a little weepy every time i read it. srsly.

flipping through formerly blank pages that are now filled with my random scribbles, trying to find something to post here. i need a new scanner though, so anything put here would be dependent on some super insta-creativity on my part which is unfortunately sorely lacking at the mo’. it’s hot and i’m feeling sluggish and grumpy, and have a sore throat, and my allergies are acting up. (speaking of which, as i was taking my drugs this morning – vitamins, antihistamine, allergy meds, the like – i stopped to look at the small pile of pills i was about to take and i suddenly felt old. is this how it goes? with each passing year i’ll accumulate more and more pills until i’m swallowing handfuls daily just to survive? sigh…) n e way, basically all i can muster right now is a “mmmhmph” and a scowl to match. i think it’s return-to-childhood time: surely a fluorescent pink popsicle and a quick reading of the giving tree will perk me up, no?

tv don’t get no respect

18 May

jarvis cocker, formerly of pulp, now singing solo; a celebrity crush i had the pleasure of meeting by accident.

i had my first “celebrity crush” on an english gentleman. it was christopher timothy, playing the role of kindly veterinarian james herriot in the bbc programme all creatures great and small. (i was 3.)

all artists are vessels, a medium through which creativity is expressed. the end result depends only on the artist’s particular craft. what begins life as an idea is filtered through the artist and emerges as something concrete: a sculpture, a sketch, a script, a song, a performance. whilst i have a deep and abiding respect and appreciation for most artistic endeavours, my greatest source of passion and inspiration has always been music. but i also harbour a great affection for what my dad called the idiot box. television may be the least respected “art”, or at least the most underrated. in terms of moving pictures, films get all the glory. the most respected and revered figures in the entertainment industry are the filmstars and directors, generally speaking. movies are big, even when they’re small: they tackle their subject matter in a sweeping manner, head-on. and many are indeed inspirational and deserving of the high praise they receive. but what about the humble television?

television is the common man to film’s high roller; even in the poorest of nations, you see that where there’s electricity, there’s a tv set. television is the long-term relationship to film’s one-night-stand; a movie lasts a mere 2 hours or so, whereas a tv series is a long-term commitment. television is like the persistent lover trying to win the heart of someone playing hard-to-get: it just keeps coming back, week after week. if you’re a regular viewer of a tv series, you’ve committed to spending quite a bit of time with that program – half an hour to an hour each week, for 10, 13, 20, 24 weeks. and each time, you’re inviting a cast of characters into your home. you witness each character’s growth and development slowly over time. you meet with these people in your kitchen, your living room, your bedroom. television is intensely personal.

what is one of the first things mentioned when we reminisce about childhood? the tv shows we watched. i grew up with the cosby family; with the keaton family; with sam, diane, woody and norm; with dorothy, blanche, rose and sophia. (not to mention bert and ernie; mister rogers; inspector gadget; he-man and she-ra; alvin, simon and theodore… i could go on and on.) later, in my teenage years, i discovered the classic britcoms of the 70s and 80s, from monty python’s flying circus to my still-favourite television series, are you being served. the catchphrases of these various characters still worm their way into my daily conversation, and plot lines are burned into my memory even decades after having experienced them. tv is seen as less glamorous than movies, more mundane, simply a part of the background. but this persistence pays off, in that we are all shaped by what we watch.

so although my first “love” is music, i’m not at all surprised that my first crush was on a character on a tv show. these characters pay us regular visits, and become a part of our lives, even if only for an hour a week. and that serves an important purpose – even when you’re just 3.

wet feet

18 May

yes i took my camera into the stall. yes i felt weird about that.

this sign is in all the stalls (or at least every one that i’ve been in) in one of the washrooms at the college where i work. i didn’t realise that this was a common practice at institutions of higher learning; nor did i realise that it was such an epidemic as to warrant prominent signange. one really does learn something new every day.