Thursday, September 28, 2006

A weird thing happened today

As I was listening to a customer on the phone blabber and jabber
on the about how upset she was that the website didn't cater to her
needs and wants and how life is so difficult when you're
almost 70 years old and just really bored all the time and have to call
1-800 numbers to occupy your time, something happened.This guy
on my campaign, Darryl, had just walked to his desk,
setting down a fresh coffee.

As he did that, and the customer blabbered away in my ear, the smell
of the coffee triggered something as I shut my eyes and suddenly
pictured my Grandma's house. It's almost as if I Happy Gilmored and found
my 'happy place'. It was strange. I was in my Grand's house, on
35 Linden Terrace, on the landing of the stairs, between the first
and second floors, and the sun was shining in the stained glass window.
Another thought that the coffee smell triggered was the fact that everytime
I ever had coffee at Gramma Betty's, especially at Christmas and other
holidays, we would drink from these clear glass mugs. I always
thought the mugs were neat as a kid because you could see the colour
of the coffee change from the outside when someone put cream or milk
into it, making dark colours swirling and pleasant smells abounding.

Our extended family gatherings really revolved around that big old
house on Linden Terrace in Ottawa. Last Christmas was the first time
my dad's side of the family was without Gramma Betty. She will be
continually missed. I guess one of the keys to enjoying life is really
soaking up the presence of those around you whom you love and
respect. Yesterday, one of my workmates was rushed out of the office
on a stretcher. I got to go see him last night, briefly, and his vitals
are good - no one really knows what it was or how to identify it.
Hopefully, he'll be okay. It really served as a reminder of the fleeting
sensation that is this life. Some of us have hope, some of us
have none, and here we all are, together.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

I have a blog coming very soon about an inspired topic.
So check back soon. I just don't have time to write
it right now. Sarah is playing v-ball and I'm here on
the Brock campus, feeling student-ish...I like that feeling.
You can be nothing and everything all at once, dress
like crap, drink coffee and read until the your eyeballs
dry out and people still accept you for who you are.
It's kinda like being in neverland. Awesome.

Anyways, yeah. More blog to come.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

16 Puts Willis and Def on the Block

Sorry. I had nothing better to do than to write a review of a movie.
Something different, I know. But it seems there is a lack of creative
energy this time of year so I thought I'd throw a flint spark toward
the fire.

So I saw 16 Blocks the other night as Sarah and I had not
rented movies in a dog's age. It seems, however, that no
matter how long we refrain from going to Blockbuster (2-3 months
at a time), the selection ALWAYS bites. Regardless, I had
seen previews for 16 Blocks a few months back, and I like
both Mos Def and Bruce Willis and thought 'that sounds cool'.
Surprisingly, I was not disappointed. I seem to remember this
movie getting many so-so to bad reviews from both peers
and critics alike but it just goes to show you - when you're
not sure, watch it yourself.

The characters and story of the film are enjoyable - who
doesn't love seeing Bruce Willis as a 'down-on-his-luck'
washed-up cop who is barely hangin' on to consciousness?
Willis plays Jack Mosley - a cop whose glory years are clearly
behind him but this one final task, probably the last before
retirement, seems to throw a massive curveball into his fairly
empty existence. Def plays a newly jailed felon whose
crime seems to be kept quite secret but his speech and
unrelenting nasal voice would suggest otherwise.

I won't give any spoilers for those who have not seen it,
but basically, Jack Mosley comes to a crossroads of
character where a decision must be made - fight the good
fight and go through hell doing it or 'do what he always
does' and give in. Though the plot twists were a tad predictable
at times, the characters make it work and keep you
guessing and glued to find out what will happen to these
two opposites traveling toward the same point. Def is good
(Hitchhiker's Guide showed alot more of his acting capability)
but Willis steals the show - his brokedown officer role both
disgusts and impresses from the first scene - haggard
skin and hair and excessive tiredness hide a heart that
is deeply buried and newly awakened. Roger Ebert said
it best in a recent review of this film: 'Jack may be middle-aged,
he may be tired, he may be balding, he may be a drunk, but
if he's played by Bruce Willis you don't want to bet against him.
He gets that look in his eye that says: It's going to be a pain
in the ass for me to do this, but I couldn't live with myself if
I didn't.'

The action sequences are very entertaining (especially scenes
with the hijacking of a city bus) but this film
is mostly minimalist in its reliance on character and story to
carry the load. I highly recommend you pick it up the next time
you are panning through the new releases at your local vidshop.
16 Blocks - I give it a 9/10.

Monday, September 11, 2006

The Blue Pill

Here I am, back at work, writing to you again from the city seen in the
above pictographical device (actually....the building where I work
is the tall, wide one with blackish windows). I feel neither good nor
bad about it. My emotions feel depleted. I worry about heart palpitations
and heart attacks constantly and wake up some nights at 3 am,
with heart racing, gasping for air because of anxiety. This is mostly
because I have dreams about animals and snakes in my bed.

Anyways, I'm alive. I'm here. Sarah is with me. I like music. You see,
I've learned this technique that doctors call 'talking yourself out' of
anxiety. It seems to be mostly effective but other times I just think I'm
gonna straight out die. Well...I am sometime. We all are. I guess these
past few years have really helped me to wrestle with that idea and get sort
of semi-comfortable with that notion.

The Wah and The Fax
I had a great time on both counts - my week at Iawah was youthful
and supremely busy but fun to be a part of the new action going on
there - and Halifax was adventurous. I learned much about my friend
Ray and what makes him who he is - that was good. I would also
travel with him at the drop of a hat anytime, again, if the opportunity
presented itself. Three new songs were recorded with grand master
Charles Austin and they may be both an upcoming demo and EP for
release this winter.

For now...I'm home.

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