I love to hear you speak

What are we talking about again?

Oh yes, of course. I remember now.

My heart is broken and full.

I am split.

I am whole.

Yourself, electric.

We turn up a song, and dance around the kitchen on the tips of our toes.

You grab my waist with one hand, and twirl my twisting torso, round and around.

Each time you make a face, I laugh.

Each time you laugh, I laugh harder.

My hair reflecting the soft light of the dying sun; the new night air drifting slowly through our windowpanes.

We breathe deep.

You hold me.

As we dance.

On the tips of our toes.

IMG_20141106_073355

What are we talking about again?

Oh yes, of course. I remember now.

Putin in single.

He’s been flirting with China’s first lady.

His libidinous and hyper-heterosexual machismo manifesting itself in tan shawls and gallant gestures.

At least he wasn’t bare chested and riding a horse.

I always wonder about the nomenclature we affix to the husbands of women who lead countries.

First man?

Mr. Mom?

Ugh.

Probably not.

I don’t think Joachim Sauer ever worries about these things.

Luckily, being a quantum chemist and full professor at the Humboldt University of Berlin, he can likely depend on a solid “Doctor Sauer” anytime he needs be introduced.

Even better – he’ll probably never have to fend off unwanted advances from the likes of Park Geun-hye or Simonetta Sommaruga.

Meanwhile, poor Angela Merkel has had to put up with George W. Bush and his ridiculous compulsion for ill-timed and completely inappropriate shoulder rubs, amongst I am sure, many other forms of completely sexist garbage.

Speaking of which, I keep laughing because the media has been telling me that we’re currently experiencing a watershed moment here in Canada in terms of the physical and sexual abuse of women.

As if this is a thing that we didn’t know existed.

Or that is supported.

Or that is propagated.

Or that is reinforced on and by all levels of society, from individuals, to the organizations that create our rules and enforce our laws.

I know I shouldn’t have been, but I was genuinely shocked to learn that there are people who didn’t know that sexual impropriety and abuse are rife amongst the affairs of our parliament.

I just (wrongly) assumed, that much like steroids in professional sports, these practices are an integral and important element to the running of our national political organization, and all the safeguards and policing practices geared towards finding and stopping this abuse are outdated, inadequate and completely impotent.

They are run and overseen by the abusers.

What good could they possibly do?

What are we talking about again?

Oh yes, of course. I remember now.

Beautiful, beautiful Nova Scotia.

IMG_20141109_013627

I think I am going to be sick

So.

Do you guys ever come home thinking that you’ll work out right away but then you realize that you’re actually starving so you eat all of the wheat thins and chocolate milk but then work out anyways and spend the whole time trying not to ralph?

Yes?

I really feel like this happens to me too much for my own good.

It’s strange.

I never really feel the full extent of my hunger pains until I walk through my front door and start getting my stuff (shorts/sports bra/socks/etc.) together and start thinking about where I am going to go for a run or what I am going to do for my workout.

I know a lot of this has to do with the fact that I often don’t eat enough food at lunch – either because I arrived for the day inadequately prepared, or maybe I just worked straight through my break, or maybe I did eat, but all I had was a bag of unsalted roasted almonds, and dried cranberries (which, just for the record, is the most delicious combination of life.)

Either way, it’s a recipe for disaster.

Because there really is nothing worse than working out and no knowing whether or not you’re going to barf – right?

(Okay, there may be one or two worse things in the world, but for the sake of hyperbole, let’s say that there isn’t.)

And I don’t know exactly why, but somehow this still keeps happening to me.

This is my blessing.

This is my curse.

I think what it boils down to is, when I get hungry – like, really, gut-wrenchingly hungry, the kind of hunger that sneaks up on you from behind and then knocks you senseless with one strong punch to the back of the head – I have little (to no) self-control over what it is that I eat, and then I carry on as if nothing has happened, having convinced myself that I need not alter my behaviour to accommodate for the 1000 milligrams of sodium I may have just ingested.

(I mean, at the very least I should drink a boatload of water to help flush that crap out.)

For instance, I once went for a six kilometer run after eating an entire bag of smokey bbq kettle chips as if it was AIN’T NO THANG.

And it wasn’t.

Until, of course, I had to make a b-line for the Queen’s Park port-a-potty approximately four and a half kilometers into my route and spent the next hour and a bit suffering from the cold-sweats, wrapped in a wool blanket, sipping peppermint tea.

(That was a pretty dark day for me.)

IMG_20130302_132638
Not this specific incident, but another pretty crazy workout – caught in a rainstorm mid-run!

This cavalier attitude is also unhelpful, because I’m really trying to push my boundaries when it comes to strength training and nothing, NOTHING says disaster, both in terms of strength gains and general gastronomic distress, then improper nutritional choices.

Speaking of which, (and I know this may seem inconsequential for all you health nuts out there), but for the past three days I haven’t eaten sweets after my dinner.

Now, this is HUGE because 1.) I actually ATE a proper dinner (huzzah!) and 2.) I normally always eat dessert after EVERY meal (seriously, sometimes I eat multiple desserts, or just have dessert for dinner).

For me, taking a bit of a break from my usual après-meal status quo is pretty darn sweet.

NO PUN INTENDED.

So in the end, maybe this crazy stuff finds a way of evening itself out?

I mean, I’m certainly going to keep striving to improve my health, make better choices, and DEFINITELY eat lunch every day – no matter what.

I just also have to recognize that, like me, these choices of mine are never going to be truly perfect.

I have an issue to ‘a dress’

Remember ladies –

IMG_20130213_073501

NOTHING IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN YOUR WEDDING.

Seriously.

You can work hard at your job, your academics, your athletic endeavours; you can scale mountains, or travel all across the globe; you can learn foreign languages, form amazing friendships, hide out in the woods, or start a billion dollar company; you can cook brilliant meals, and read all the books, watch all the movies, or write all the plays.

But none of that matters.

Nor do any of these things even come close to the importance of finding a man who will eventually ask you to marry him.

Because if a man doesn’t ask you to spend the rest of your life with him, that means you will never be able to make YOUR MOST IMPORTANT FASHION PURCHASE OF YOUR LIFE.

Which, of course, is your WEDDING DRESS.

Not that amazing suit you scrimped and saved up for, in the lead up to your biggest and most important job interview.

Not that amazing pair of shoes you waited forever to go on sale and snatched them the moment you could afford them, because they make you feel like a superhero when you wear them.

Not that concert t-shirt you bought in grade nine and then proceeded to wear every day for a year, because that event, up until that point, was the most seminal music experience of your life.

Not the dress you bought for your grandfather’s funeral, or the pair of runners you bought for your first big road race, or those yoga pants that make you feel invincible, or those sunglasses that make you look like an international spy.

Not that amazing sports bra that you adamantly wash by hand because you fear it wearing out, or that ten dollar sundress you wore all last summer because you will never find anything so cute and comfortable for the rest of your days.

None of these things matter.

What a second –

*looks around*

IS THIS 2013 OR WHAT?

How are we still dealing with this crazy bullshit?

A woman’s wedding dress is not the most important fashion purchase of her life.

Not unless a masked killer is actually holding a gun to her head yelling “IMMA MURDER YOU UNLESS YOU PURCHASE A WEDDING DRESS!!!!”

Then, I am willing to agree that it was a pretty important buy.

But only then!

And this is coming from a married woman. Who loved both her dress, and her wedding.

Not to mention that I LOVE love. Like, a lot.

And I am all for people coming together to support, celebrate, and embrace this part of life.

But this whole conceit, this long-standing mythology that a wedding is somehow day NUMERO UNO for all the LAIDEEZ makes me want to rip all the hair from my head.

What kind of message do you think this is sending to little girls? And little boys?

Could you imagine a piece on a man’s “most important fashion purchase”?

The idea is so far-fetched I am having a hard time even imaging what it could possibly be.

But goodness knows, it sure is easy to promote the age old trope of the overarching, MEGA HUGE importance of a wedding dress. I mean, if it wasn’t, why the heck would we still be publishing utter crap, like the above photographed article?

Which is basically can be summed up in the following equation: WOMAN+WEDDING = LIFE GOAL – ACHIEVED!

Urg.

Of course, this is not me saying that women should not love their wedding dresses.

Oh no.

I’m just saying that it’s imperative for us to remember that: ALL WOMEN = so much more than an “I DO.”

Ya know what I mean?

Or should I be saying –

Do you?

Making it all bearable

Hey kids.

First off – LOOK AT HOW BEAUTIFUL THE SKY IS GOOD GRIEF IT KILLS ME.

IMG_3219 - Copy

Seriously, I near but froze my toes off, tip-toeing around my balcony yesterday morning trying to get these shots.

But are they not oh-so worth it?

And then, because I’m one who can never just leave well enough alone, I had to take a second round of shots as I walked to the metro (plus one final snap when I arrived at the skytrain station.)

IMG_20130117_071444

Honestly, I’m surprised that I don’t catch more people taking snaps of the sunrise. I mean, am I the only sap left in the world who’s moved by this kind of thing?

Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that I was some kind of high-flying migratory bird, or climatologist, or Greek god in one (or all of) my previous lives, what with how pathologically OBSESSED I am with the sky.

P.S I’m calling dibs on Athena, here and now and NO SWAPSIES ALLOWED! That badass gal is my homegirl through and through, ya dig?

Anywho, I can only hope that we continue to have good weather so I can carry on getting all shirty over cloud striations, and the way the early-morning horizon looks like a giant space toddler’s blue and orange finger painting project.

(p.s. I think I’ve been reading too much Drew Magary, hence the current love affair with CAPS LOCK. Do not be alarmed. As with all crushes before it – both written and otherwise – this too soon shall pass.)

In the interim, fry up time!

All that glitters is not gold.

So my fabitty fab sister in-law Vanessa is engaged to be married, and her wedding day is coming up daisies (or within the calendar year if you will). As such, she is on the hunt for a gown in which she will be fit to wed her dearly betrothed.

Now, I love weddings like the wedding-mad fool that I am, so I readily agreed to accompany her shopping the second that she asked. We spent last Saturday afternoon together, along with my mother in-law (or CAPTAIN C as I like to refer to her), visiting the various shops that line downtown New Westminster, perusing their incredibly diverse wares.

Now, my sis is a lady of discerning taste, and to say that there were some stores that didn’t quit fit the bill is a bit of an understatement.

For instance, I managed to covertly snap this picture of one of the prom dresses available for purchase at one of the shops:

IMG_20130112_143557

WHO?

WHY?

HOW?

I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHY SOMEONE WOULD MAKE A DRESS OUT OF THE SAME MATERIAL USED TO CREATE THE SPACE SHUTTLE.

Seriously, somewhere out there Rumpelstiltskin just rolled over in his grave.

(Also, that pink number isn’t anything to write home about either.)

Needless to say, we didn’t last long in that shop, and quickly moved on to a store where everything Ms. V tried on brought tears of happiness and joy to my eyes (and not, you know, a panic attack.)

Different strokes and all that, but my capacity for completely gaudy get-ups is limited, especially outside the confines of an H&M dressing room.

NEXT!

To a Tee.

Remember when I wrote about how awesome my little sister’s butcher shop is?

Well, check out these smashing Highland Drive t-shirts HOT OFF THE PRESSES:

photo 1

photo 4

Don’t you want one?

I have already placed an order for both M and myself, so you should probably think about procuring some of your own. All the cool kids are doing it!

Find out how you can get your mitts on these sweet things by following my wicked sister on the FACEBOOKS HERE.

(And while you’re there, you should probably stop by Ye Olde Rant and Roll and like that too. SHAMELESS PLUG Y’ALL.)

Techno queen.

Sometimes I feel as though I am overrun by gadgets.

IMG_20130107_210140

(This overwhelming sensation definitely played a leading role in what kept me from getting a cell phone for so long.)

I mean, I go to work and sit at a compute – writing, reading, researching, blogging, tweeting, facebooking, e-mailing, scheduling, etc., etc.

Then I come home and use my laptop or tablet, like some Asimov inspired cyborg.

And it is because of this that I make such a concerted effort to make sure that I unplug at every available opportunity. I read like a reading thing as much as I can, go for walks with my husband, take endless photos of my cat (and the sky), cook, listen to the radio (what would I do without the CBC!?), talk on the phone with my far-away loved ones (ACK! I have just realized that most of these things are gadget related!), or just sit and think my madcap thoughts, all alone and on my own.

However, on this last point I really need to get better at “just being.”

Growing up, we used to always call it “bear by yourself” time. I want to re-learn how to be bear by myself.

That’s all she wrote this Friday my loves.

Wishing you all a very fabulous weekend, whether it is adventure filled or quietly serene!

Take each moment, and enjoy.

It’s clear as day

Okay people.

IMG_3203 - Copy

Today I want to talk zits.

Pimples.

Acne.

THE WORKS.

Between grades seven to ten I had a pretty bad case of the pizza face (to use the most unappealing and totally grotesque descriptor that could possibly come to mind). To make matters worse, when I started grade nine, I realized that my blemishes had also begun to migrate to other areas of my body, such as my shoulders, back, and chest.

Being the tank-top connoisseur that I was, not to mention a girl already tormented with braces and glasses, this dispersion, to me, was pushing the boundary of general decency.

I mean, with how much dermatological baggage should a fourteen year old girl be saddled?

Good grief.

So I tried a number of different brands and products in a bid to rid myself from this dastardly affliction, with most of my efforts being, of course, in vein.

I spent my a large percentage of my (minimal) disposable income on topical acne gels, Biore facial strips, and medicated face and body washes just to try and keep those little (and sometimes not so little) red dots at bay.

But nothing ever really worked and I was miserable.

What little else remained of my money was spent on heavy duty foundation and thick translucent powder (powder that I used to “set” said foundation.)

[Ed. note to any teenage readers: THIS IS NEVER A GOOD THING TO DO.]

Waking up every morning and counting the number of zits on my face, hoping against hope that there would be less than the day before, I, like any good overdramatic fifteen year old, was at the point where I began to believe that this would be my life FOREVER.

That was until November of grade ten rolled around and my mother set me up with a prescription for Acutane.

Now, say what you want about this product (and I know there is a ton of legitimate negative literature out there on the subject) but for me, this medication was a godsend.

Sure, my lips were dryer than the Sahara desert the entire time I took those big white pills, but seeing how well (and how fast) my skin cleared up, I would have agreed to a lifetime of chapped smoochers in exchange for the miracle work it had performed on not only my face – but all my other “problem” areas.

Thinking back, I cannot help but smile when thinking about the summer before entering grade eleven.

I got my braces taken off, got new “cool” specs (and by cool I mean the big, black frames I still wear today. I was rocking my nerd glasses way before anyone thought to make them into a trend!), and my skin had completely cleared up.

I remember going to a party at a boy’s house (a boy that would eventually become my first boyfriend) in August and him telling me how great I looked.

I was on top of the world.

Flash forward over the past ten years, and well, during this time I have had both fantastic skin, and not so fantastic skin.

The short and simple answer as to why this disparity exists is this:

I have (and have had) fantastic skin when I have been healthy.

I had not so fantastic skin when I was sick.

Take me at my word kids: nothing mucks up your skin faster than being bulimic.

After particularly awful episodes I would break out horribly, and in awkward places at that – all along my jaw line, across my hairline, and next to my temples (just to name a few.)

And then what do you know, I was back at the drug store procuring that foundation and powder, contemplating whether or not another round of medication was worth the hassel.

In the end, I am happy to report that in its stead, I took the necessary steps to improve my health, and since this time have been back to a non-caked-on-concealer complexion.

However.

The skin on the rest of my body remains as sensitive as a sensitive thing, and seeing as though my skin is pretty much translucent and easily scarred, I have to be very careful about the kind of body washes and soaps that I use in the cleaning process, and about never buying bras that dig into my skin, and about using lightweight workout clothes.

Because if I don’t I’ll most likely get some sweet skin decoration going on – decoration that will lurk around for quite awhile, due to said aforementioned easy scarring.

But honestly, at this point in my life I don’t really care either way.

I don’t have the energy to waste on these matters.

Sure, sometimes this sensitivity grinds my gears, but when it comes down to it – a zit or two on my shoulder will never, ever be something that stops me from doing anything I actually want to do.

And why should it?

It’s funny.

I can still remember a conversation that I had with one of my best friends when we were but thirteen years old.

She asked me: “Would you rather have perfect skin, or always be skinny, for the rest of your life?”

With my body issues beating my skin issues in the race for most damaging control over my life, I easily answered “Skinny.”

I so badly wish I could go back and help that young girl know that the right answer is neither of those two options.

But the again, hey – she ended up finding her way there eventually.