left leaning

today's globe and mail WEB POLL results show more canadians are 'left' than 'centre' and more 'centre left' than 'centre right'.

all i gotta say is Prove It!

where would you say you fall in the political spectrum?

far left

938 votes (4%) 938 votes


3836 votes (14%) 3836 votes

centre left

7346 votes (28%) 7346 votes


3112 votes (12%) 3112 votes

centre right

6128 votes (23%) 6128 votes


3943 votes (15%) 3943 votes

far right

1178 votes (4%) 1178 votes

total votes: 26481


go gore go

finally saw last night the film made about al gore's "slide show" (his words - mine would be "elaborate power point presentation"). i was surprised to see that many people in the theatre, given that it's been out for awhile and oh yeah, is sobering.

even a quasi-activist would find the material a bit rudimentary, though a few highlighted facts made me gasp. he does a good job of translating the complexities of global warming into pithy lessons. and it's all true (smarty pantses were quick to check facts). the deliberate skirting of partisanship, i suppose i get that. personal glimpses into gore's frustration with lack of political response to global warming were peppered throughout, but the film avoids naming - in any concise way - reasons for that resistance. too Provocative or Wing-nutty, perhaps, for a distinguished gentleman to use words like "greed" or "capitalism" in an attempt to compel mainstream america. that bugs me.

don't get me wrong. the film is good. it won a prize. and for activists, i suppose the film reminds us of the possibility of public awareness, the potential of public engagement. if every viewer does even one of the uber-simple actions suggested during the end credits, then gore has added a significant wave to the movement. and so go gore go.

my own movement (the 'forward' one, that is) continues. haven't had a chance to dive into the latest assignment from my life coach: to write as many goals for myself as years i've been alive. it's not easy. for inspiration, i wandered over to
43 things and even signed up for an account. the first thing i entered was "stop wishing" and apparently i'm the only one who wants to (all this means is that none of the tens of thousands of other members are able to tell me how they succeeded in doing that. drat.) so then i entered "go back to cuba" and behold, 'comrade' wants that as well! he also wants to organize an anti-fascist festival in newcastle, so i love him. but he can't spell, so maybe not so much love. strong like.



songs that fit the meter of the second hand on a clock in my guest bedroom, where i went batty trying to sleep last night:

foolish games - jewel
eternal flame - bangles
imagine - john lennon
head over feet - alannis
creep - tlc
give a little bit - supertramp
puff the magic dragon


forward motion

as usual, i am making and re-working list upon list in disconcerting rainman ways. but it's all good because i'm excited about forward motion. got an amazing price quote from these guys and so yay, the movers are booked. 3 weeks from today, i'll be sitting amidst the same boxes in a different house and that's pretty neat. between moving tasks and whatever time i can spare for actual paid work, i gotta turn this pool from green to crystal and get the hell in it. the only water in my new backyard will be from an outdoor faucet that i've yet to confirm exists and might fill a kiddie pool into which a friend or two could dangle feet.

things are nuts and i may feel overwhelmed, but flashes of perspective come from many angles - i hear the guy who played screech on saved by the bell has resorted to selling t-shirts for a buck, and i just feel better.

our show earlier in the week at the world refugee day event went well enough, i thought, though kevin said it was the worst gig of his life, which we're not to take personally and so i won't. members of the african gospel choir came up and sang backup on midnight train to georgia and it felt awesome. it was also great because matt came and sat in the back to watch me/us for the first time. it was also great because i finally ran into kelly who i've been meaning to connect with since settling in this town. not only did he provide a refreshing blast from the past, he hooked me up with numbers for other lost friends from a musical era i miss deeply.

speaking of music, claude made an amazing cd called Women Men Won't Marry and i told him i belong on it as much as shawn colvin or paula cole and he said absolutely, we should get recording. i think i'd really like that. he's got all this new recording and production software and gadgetry that he's trying to figure out. how amazing he sounds on his first (experimental) track tells me he's got the knack.



a brief barrage of sharp rain pellets this evening left my quartier without power. i'd only been home a short while when the house went still. the boredom and exhaustion led me to a decadent weeknight nap. it was warm, but nothing like the wilting i endured in montreal yesterday. and it's not even that hot yet. the humid central-canadian summer officially begins on wednesday. a rainy week gave way to a sweltering weekend. thanks to an up-do and the occasional light breeze, i managed alright. was headachey from the hair pins though.

when the air is this sticky and warm, you reduce speed and lighten plans. after spending most of saturday in a stuffy (in more ways than one) room here (another jovial ndp meeting, yes), we dedicated sunday to sloth (well, there were momentary hommages to that other sin - anger - but it feels like we are someplace way beyond anger so far as the ongoing internal bullshit is concerned, and plus, steve said he's made peace with his god around that stuff, whatever the fuck that means). so in honour of non-ndp-ness, we walked around the village at barely a saunter to find a place for brunch. ate fruit salad and lingered on the terrasse out of sheer laziness. our great enthusiasm to catch the france/korea game was overpowered by a heat fatigue. we found a place to watch it, but took our muggy selves home at half time. i had intense fantasies about being supine on a beach, rolling in and out of the water. montreal is on a fucking island - you'd think there were such locations nearby, but apparently not. so instead, i contemplated immersion in a tub of cold water, but was too hot to bother. couldn't even nap, for that matter.

at least this weather makes smoking feel and taste gross. i wonder, will i butt out entirely this summer...


soul for refugees

many have remarked that i've been with this band for a year now and never really tell anyone when we play. i now break that silence for a good cause.

my bandmate, a lawyer with this u.n. agency, booked us into an incongruent line-up at a benefit concert for world refugee day. so if you're in the byward market on tuesday looking for an evening of african vibes and motown, head to the rainbow.
good will may be high, but ticket sales are apparently low, so bring a friend. here's the (rather earnest) poster generated by those crazy u.n. kids. you can click on it to get a better peek at the word art.


offer, accepted

bid on a house this week, pulled out of the bid, then re-bid on the same house. it's a long sordid tale. found out yesterday evening that the offer is approved. yay. it's small and quaint and heated (controversially, apparently) by hot water generated by oil. so if the inspection and financing go well, i will move in a month from yesterday, one day before relinquishing possession of my current casa. so a month to pour all of this shit into a few boxes and transfer to the urban cottage located a couple of short blocks from this organic hipster hangout.

as for other forms of moving on, i suppose this week has been an emancipation, of sorts, from my family. this is a process i thought i'd lived many times over, but i have to say that recent drama has led to a tremendous lifting of weight from these slouched shoulders. i have never felt (or been) more clear about my boundaries. i'm told that other people's families are also crazy, but i do believe if there were some sort of prize, we are formidable contenders.

so to recap, the week at a glance:

much too much familial drama brought on a very lengthy migraine. have attempted to entertain and live life around a rather pouty mother whose ill-timed conference put her in the eye of my real estate storm. between distractions, managed to whip up most of the newsletter i promised match this week. sang thelma houston last night at disco karaoke and a guy i know pretty much offered to rock my world. it goes without saying that i'm giving this due consideration. after all, i AM trying, in fact, to HAVE a world and let's face it, there's no rocking in it. wobbling, maybe. so here i've been contemplating riviving the old booty call, and this new guy steps up.
i'm thinking since the whole True Love angle isn't really panning out, fuck it. heard so much talk lately of summer flinging, i think i want in.


stolen meme

i thought this one was kinda fun. juvenile, but fun. spotted chez audra who "snagged" it from another person and so on. that's how these meme thingies work.

i left out some sillier questions. i mean, i just don't believe in best friends or marriage or children. i also left out (gladly) editorials after each like Ha! or Yikes! or OMG!

put your music player on shuffle and press forward for each question. use the song title as the answer to each question, even if it doesn't make sense. no cheating.

[ok, like these responses are For Reals, i pinky swear to god]

how am i feeling today? goody two shoes - adam ant
will i get far in life? she goes on - neil finn
how do my friends see me? gone for good - the shins
what is the story of my life? heart and soul - t'pau
what is the best thing about me? shooting stars - edwin mccain
what song describes my parents? changes - tupac & dmx
how is my life going? i drive alone - esthero
what song will they play at my funeral? trying to love you - beth neilsen chapman
what was today like? moon river - frank sinatra
how does the world see me? teenage dirtbag - scala
do people secretly lust after me? cold feet - tracy chapman
how can i make myself happy? bring me to life - evanescence
what should i do with my life? a roller skating jam - de la soul

how will i die? powerless - nelly furtado

wanted other options for the death, so i clicked again, then again and again ... these are funny and also, very acceptable to me [although let's face it, the last one is totally implausible].

mama said knock you out - ll cool j
last days on earth - tears for fears
not like crazy - jill scott
seven days in sunny june - jamiroquai
i want to take you higher - sly & the family stone
while we were hunting rabbits - matthew good



a rant posted this morning about the violent craziness of my dad has now been removed after only 2 hours. i figure my sweet relatives who occasionally read this page need not hear such things. suffice it to say that the demons of that never-ending parent/child relationship have gotten the better of me these past few days. replete with migraine. i'm working on it. there may or may not be a house purchase of my liking at the end of this saga. that is all.

sometimes you feel like a nut

that media grubbing right-wing mouthpiece master of malice ann coulter called the 9/11 widows "harpies" and all hell has broken loose... again. except this time, some of her cozy neo-con counterparts are cutting her loose (even uber-nut o'reilly called her latest rant "mean and counterproductive", oh my). so far, this is the best piece i've read about her/it. if we, The Liberals, are godless, i shudder to think, who's your god, ann?


flashing lights

got pulled over by a cop on my way home friday night from pasta and chats. perfect end to a weird day. his first words: "francais ou anglais?" mine: "les deux". a slightly untrue response, i guess, because his next question, in french, sounded to me like "are you drunk tonight ma'am?" - which i was most certainly not, disappointingly - and so i looked up at him, stunned, and asked "whaaaaa?" at which point he was probably thinking, "ok, apparement, PAS les deux". he had followed me long enough to observe me push through two yellow lights. i had noticed him behind me, but the shadowy car with one broken headlight hadn't looked so police-y to me. luckily, he must have concluded that my stammering and confusion were unrelated to alcohol consumption. true 'dat. and so he let me go. fittingly, i believe. because how i felt most of that day: a dazed narrowly-escaping dough-head.


who's watching

on monday, participated in a consultation for MediaWatch, an organization so defuct i don't even have a link to offer. a couple of die hards are trying to revive it - and good for them, i say - so some of us were invited to brainstorm about the whats and hows. as a media junkie, i had a thing or two to say about what this org could be doing in terms of depictions of women in media and our access to it. many women said many interesting things, yet we became concerned about the need to re-define the term Media. it encapsulates so much more than even 25 years ago when this org might have looked at how women and women's issues get 'covered' in the 'press'. it would seem that the increasing diversity and complexity of media requires a diverse and complex analysis of its inclusion of and impact on women. especially girls.

i get especially excited about the kind of innovative and relevant monitoring and advocacy we could do re: young women and new media. because i spend a lot of time thinking about the demise of the F word, the rise of the feminine, and the era of reality tv and surreal expectations. i think about how confusing it must be to be 15 - gangly or gorgeous - having to contend with seventy-bajillion images and messages about what is cool, pretty, 'clean', power, desirable, famous, and phat or sick or whatever.

when we imagine what kind of fresh feminist approach to media watching should be, we gotta think about who's watching what too. the digital age can be confusing to second wavers who want to talk lots about enhanced school curricula on media literacy but can't seem to have a conversation about xbox. our progressive mothers used to host uppity kitchen table discussions about gender roles dictated by dolls and barbies. now we need to talk about how girls play and get played from every angle. i think it could be radicool to 'watch' what big pulsating imprints are being made on our girls through all that new-fangled media. mixed messages ain't just on the airwaves and newsstands anymore. a few of us hip youngsters at the consultation talked about the crazy overlap of pop and tech culture these days. from lara croft to lava life to msn to myspace. not like i know any fucking thing about anything: my ipod hasn't been fired up in a couple of months, my cell doesn't take pictures, and my first serious foray into text messaging was during the meeting itself when this fellow attendee sent me funny notes about people in the room As They Spoke.


in the news

many stories have been filed by many intrepid reporters across this great land. what this means is that the google news search has yielded 14 hits this morning versus the 6 we found yesterday evening. that gives me a warm and tingly feeling of satisfaction, for sure. no smoke and mirrors to get this kind of coverage. the ywca sure has some credibility and clout and expertise, and i, apparently, give "good phone". t'all converges in a slick media drive. need to track down the globe article that took backflips to secure - next on my to-do list. i'm still super fucking tired. glad it's done. moving on.


gimme a y

a whole lot of tiredness has culminated in a totally wowzer day with the ywca report launch today. i'm absurdly pooped. all i want is to get a little tipsy tonight and sleep in really late tomorrow. i guess it's ok to be this fucking giddy to be done with a project.

the media really grabbed the story and frickin' ran. it all started with a very successful press conference on the hill at 9, and galloped along from there. i have been on my feet all the livelong day. it's like a press agent's dream to be juggling two cell phones and plugging interviews into page after page of scheduling grids. we got pick up from big outlets and every corner of the country. we were on the loops of newsworld and newsnet. the globe and mail actually called. the journalists, for the most part, were on the mark and insightful (cfra notwithstanding - shocker). our spokespeople were great. nothing blew up in our face. no one fell apart. i feel giddy. and tired. and even a bit indifferent. mainly because it's done. and i really really like that.

check it: sample story and two video streams of two of my best gals