Category Archives: Get out of your comfort zone

Mastering the Art of Not Being Scared of the Wind

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I used to have these two Shiba Inu dogs, or #doges before they were Very Meme, Much Interwebs, So Pupular in comic sans.  They were father and daughter, and every time it got windy outside, they would go ballistic inside. I guess it was the noise and the rattling of the windows that set off some vestigial primal fear of  tsumanis from their natural homeland of Japan. When the wind blew, the father dog, Cruise, who was a big pussy, and so very cute, would try and bury himself in my head. Whether I was laying down or not, he’d hop on the bed or on my lap, then climb my shoulders and start digging on my neck and face. So exfoliating. In his mind, my head was the highlands, some kind of mountainous safe space for him to seek sanctuary. What an idiot, if he only knew what a dump my brain is and how I fail to clean it up, he should have dug into my stomach and aimed for the womb because maybe its not a luxury hotel but it’s a pretty decent air bnb with free booze at happy hour.

The female dog, his daughter Penny, feared the wind with the same intensity but faced it head on like the savage warrior she was. When the windows rattled, she’d run up the the second floor of the house, scratch at the bay window in the front room, snout the window open and then scratch the screen so she could bust through, and then plop her ass down on the porch roof  and sit ever so still like Much Gargoyle. She had that ninja dog thing that no matter what barrier you created, she would find another way out.

Pretty much anything I needed to know about life, I could have learned from Penny and Cruise had I have paid closer attention. Especially about on-line dating: Penny had mad hunting skillz and could catch small animals (birds! squirrels! hamsters from their cages, oy!) and actually follow through and kill them and then actually fucking eat them, wasting no meat, INCLUDING A SKUNK, unlike most domestic dogs who may catch a squirrel by the tail, get freaked out, lol about it, and let go. This is like everybody on Tinder by the way. A bunch of wily woofers chasing squirrels in the fenced park, all game no bone. Swiped right, match! What to do now? Close app, so scared, pretend it didn’t happen, back to Candy Crush.

****NOTE: Im just going to carry on about this wind business THEN I’ll tell you how I faced my fears and went on an actual Tinder date because I know that’s why you read this blog, bear with me.

So! It’s been 11-12 years since those two crazy shibes have gone to doggie heaven and I still think about them every day. Especially yesterday when a random gust-o-palooza of wind starting blowing out of nowhere, certainly my iPhone weather app gave no indication of a hurricane. I get all antsy in windy situations from all the years of #ShibeLife, and the memories of coming home and seeing Penny sitting on a slanted roof and going into panic mode: me, inside trying to bribe her with food while the neighbour, outside on a ladder, pushes her stubborn ass back into the window and thinking she was going to slide off and plunge to her death or worse, get injured but not so serious she would have to be put down for a set price, but like a broken leg or something, think of the vet bills, oh my god.

I think I gave current dog, Betty, the wind phobia by transference as she is very intuitive. By “intuitive” I mean spoiled as fuck where the whole family anthropomorphizes this beast like she’s a doggie oracle who runs the household based on her love of pizza parties and belly rubs. But we love her and it bonds us all, don’t judge.

So during the wind last night, Betty and I huddled on the couch, panting frantically and watching Jeopardy, fucking dog always forgets to answer in the form of a question. The windows rattled, Betty’s breath was so bad, I tried to bury my head in my iPhone. At one point, I channeled my old dog Penny, and ran onto the back deck and Instagrammed the branches flailing in the wind. Yes, this is it, those fucking weed trees from the jungle next door are going to rip up by the root and leave giant holes and plumbing issues and I’m going to have to call the insurance company and get shit fixed which will take forever and then inflated premiums! and! the whole thing will cost way more than a vet bill for a broken dog leg. That’s how my mind works: Stop worrying about one thing and go on to the next and make the worst case scenario into a movie-of-the week drama starring Daphne Zuniga. Maybe if Dean Cain isn’t doing anything, he can be the tough-as-nails insurance adjuster who at first is a dick but during the plot twist, maybe where he saves her dog from the roof, they end up falling in love, proving there is hope for divorced middle aged women everywhere. Might as well make my fears have happy endings.

My next door neighbour, Colleen, bristles with excitement every time the wind picks up from our stagnant porch life. “Peterson! It’s amazing!” Maybe she has Penny’s ghost sitting on top of her head?  I’m always, like what the fuck, it’s so scary, the wind is all about change and I hate change. I want everything to be the same always or at least gently eased into the new status quo. I have to be greasy and blindfolded to keep moving. In fact I’m amazed I even made it out of my mother’s womb in the first place.

Colleen doesn’t see wind as impending doom, instead it’s fresh opportunity. I don’t know for what, neighbourhood watch fodder? Or maybe when she saw The Wizard of Oz she actually thought it was a barrel of fun instead of a depressing allegory of a girl reaching puberty, getting her period (ruby slippers!), leaving home because wind, yo! landing in some strange place and then running into a bunch of hapless jerks, 3 dudes who represent the holy trinity of male foibles that we’ve all dated:  a dumb ass scarecrow who is friend zone material, an emotionally unavailable and obvious closet case tin man, and the quintessential cowardly lion who has erectile dysfunction because he probably drinks too much (I’ll take that one, btw, I can work with it). I think the wizard represents religion, he is a deity of sorts,  and the witches are directional pulls, where is the witch of the south though? Hmm. I could go really deep into it and blow our minds but my local weed dispensary has been shut down. But! Suffice to say there’s a lot of anxiety in the land of Oz and that Dorothy is a pretty bad ass lil bitch because she FACES HER FEARS. Just as an observation though, I feel like when she poured water over the wicked witch that that was a real lame-ass deus ex machina in terms of the plot device. Like oh, yeah, we’re supposed to believe that water is going to melt this bad bitch into oblivion when the ho flies her broom in the dankest of skies where there is probably 90 percent chance of showers and dollars for donuts she has gotten wet before.

So yeah, maybe wind isn’t so scary if you keep the windows open and try and remember those flying monkeys are all up in yo head. Your dog wouldn’t want to scratch his way inside if they were actually real. If the breeze brings change, like in the form of a scary email or something, maybe it’s just best to deal with it rather than stress over it. It’s better to be the dog sitting precariously on the roof, than the one scratching itself into a living human head and even if it was a hollowed out skull, he couldn’t possibly fit like a LolCat in box. Am I right?

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So yeah, just thinking about Dorothy and her 3 main archetypes of men reminded me of a Tinder date I went on last month. It was an actual earnest date, not like a hookup-Netflix-chill type thing, this dude asked me out in public for a drink. In the daytime, I might add, which wins points for me. Also he was “age appropriate” which is not necessarily a good thing from my field studies. I find that the middle aged men in the dating pool deny that term as though in their 45 year old minds, they are planning on living way past the age of 120. I don’t fucking think so, but I will give the term “middle age” a loosely dug out cave window of 40ish-60something less than 65,  just to be nice. And so my field studies indicate the middle aged men are all out in the park chasing squirrels half their age because they think they can until they realize they are cowardly lions, than haha, joke’s on them. So anyway! More points for this dude for asking an old tree bound squirrel out on a date. Here’s how it went down:

We meet at the bar place and he is cute! Like a swarthy hipster with some character. He has one of those haircuts with the intricate fade and pineapple mess on top (hipster, and I’m ok with that) and a massive scar on his cheek that looked exactly like someone hollowed out a beer bottle and smashed it in his eye (totally hot). Best of all, he has a big black beard with silvers in it, you know that’s my number one weakness since I’ve given up on ginger ones.

We sit outside in the brightness of the sun which is pretty brutal, why not just go to a nude beach and stand in front of each other and lay the sunscreen on, but whatevs. He has a British accent! Cute! But! He keeps saying “wanker.” Ugh. First beer goes down nicely and then he orders shots of whiskey or whisky whichever. Is that a red flag in day drinking first date? But YOLO and did I mention it was my birthday? And it turns out he’s a shot sipper! Just like me! Teeny tiny sips! Cute! But his eyes have turned to slits already. Ugh. We order another beer. He mentions I seem nervous. I fidget, it’s my nature. He calls the waitress a wanker because she thinks our shot sipping is wimpy. She is awkward, it’s probably her first serving job. She’s a mere child though, I’m sure she drinks Bodacious mixed with 7-Up and calls it Sangria.

Second beer, second shot, he tells me the other waitress should take off the dress she is wearing, which is tight as fuck, you could play mini-golf on her cellulite, meow. I’m thinking seriously? Is he’s ogling the waitress in front of me but I play along because I’m one of those bro-girls you can talk shit in front of even though I hate it and say, “Oh is it because she has one of those hot tear drop shaped asses like a Vargas girl?” and he looks at me all squinty with no understanding whatsoever and says, “No, because the pattern on the fabric clashes with her tattoos.” THE PATTERN ON THE FABRIC CLASHES WITH HER TATTOOS. I don’t think I could get a lady boner over someone who gave a fuck about fabric clashing, had the wherewithal to even form that thought in his head and then actually say it out loud but! it was my birthday and I’m willing to be open. Silver in the beard, silver in the beard, I keep thinking.

Third beer, third shot. “You seem so nervous,” he said it again! No, I’m not nervous per se, I just didn’t get high before the date, Perky McPercocet. His eyelids have melted over his nose. Which was small by the way, I like me a big ass nose. Plus I’m actually just trying to carry on a conversation and not pretending to be a guest judge on Project Runway. We kind of run out of things to say, although second beer in, I did get the story of his life where he described himself as the family “ne’er do well” and how his first boner was with a nurse who held his little boy peen for him to pee after he got an emergency circumcision at a cognitive age. Her fingernails were red and pointy, and when he looked down at her feet, she was wearing sexy spiked heels. Of course she was.

Anyway, when we were done and waiting awkwardly for the check, he lays back on his seat, stroking his beard,  and staring at the men in front us, he actually says, “That wanker shouldn’t wear that fedora in that colour.” Oh my god. He may as well as poured water over my head, ding dong, the lady boner is officially dead. This guy was a tin man if there ever was one.

Footnote (literally): From the get-go, I could tell his disapproval of me when he looked down at my shoes which were Sketchers and yes, like they are stitched up from sexy grey upholstery of a Hyundai Sonata but fuck it, who cares, when I wear them I feel like walking on a winding road made of the tender soft balls of a million munchkin menfolk. Squish, squish. Bring on the wind machine!

 

 

 

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Mastering the Art of Embracing Your Inner Zombie

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Happy New Year, my interweb angels! Hope you are enjoying your righteous January resolutions as I am mine. Drink more whisk(e)y, is my top one. Apparently brown drinks are the answer. To what question, I’m not entirely sure.  It was on my Facebook newsfeed that whisky prevents cancer and has less sugar than wine so it must be true. I’m over that whole Juiceless January cleansing ritual, it’s for amateurs.  You end up with too many lucid waking hours with more time to feel guilty about being alive and not doing the things you said you would do when you were drunk, ie. a 4 hour Zumba class for Syrian refugees at the local rec centre on a Saturday afternoon (there is no way).

Also, for Christmas I got a cast iron pan which is a first for me believe it or not, so I can make a proper steak and these taters I am very excited about. Fuck you and your kale smoothies, your lazy ass colon frightens me, do you know that whisky makes you poop? THIS gives me a starchy lady boner:

And speaking of fear, why am I zombied up, you ask?  Evangeline did this to me because she’s been bingeing on The Walking Dead for the past few weeks which I just can’t with. I tried the first episode but it did not grab moi but because she watches it in the living room (to be close to mama because she’s too scared to watch it in her room) I have the soundtrack in my head constantly. There’s hardly any dialogue on the show, a bit of hillbilly babble and the rest is all just low level guttural monster groaning/snarling/gurgling interspersed with silent bits and then bam! some really loud growl and screaming (Evangeline). You could set your watch by the ebb and flow of zombie moaning. Freddy, when he wasn’t downstairs engulfed in his own rattle and hum cocoon of PlayStation, we would huddle in my room and laugh at the predictability of it all. Then when she was done watching it on Netflix, she watched it again! AMC actually aired a 24/7 marathon of it on natural television after Christmas, and Jesus and Jose in the manger, there was nowhere to hide. Also! the hot dude with the cue cards from Love Actually is now her tv boyfriend which means there will be more zombie groaning in the future.

Normally I would rather talk about stupid vampires than entertain the mythology of  the ridiculous zombie apocalypse but I softened after seeing how pretty a zombie I am. Dem eyebrows tho! I should change up my eyeliner game and wear darker lipstick, no? According to the girl, the modern obsession with zombies is a tabula rasa for us to project our collective and individual fears upon. Zombie Apocalypse can be representative of a number of paranoias and dystopian disturbances aside from the obvious disease and death, let’s randomly list:

  • global warming
  • terrorism
  • Isis
  • people in general
  • North Korea
  • Labradoodles
  • aliens!
  • guns
  • ‘Murca
  • Tinder
  • Internet cookie trails
  • LinkedIn
  • Donald Trump
  • butt plugs
  • Zumba *shudder*

It turns out all my zombie fears are within my own skeletal base, I discovered this by accident. Aside from the frying pan, I also got a massage certificate for Christmas which I was so excited about since I no longer get these things covered by insurance. I know I can just bite the bullet and pay for them but I’m not wired that way. So I booked an appointment last week with a burly Mexican dude name Juan, and since it’s been awhile I thought I would opt for some deep tissue. I figure man hands are clumsy but they can dig mightily and it never occurs to them they might be hurting you when they prod into your organs. I don’t like to be a wuss so I always take the pain and let them have their way. It’s usually beneficial in the end because when it’s done, you feel so much looser. This time I should have maybe cried uncle at some point because Juan was a fearless deep sea diver of a massage artist and he probably should have left some knots stay clenched tight.

It started out fine, he let me lay face down and he poked over the blanket me like I was an interesting beached mermaid with legs. He pummelled his fists down my spine up and down and then he got the point of his elbow and jammed it into my right ribcage and exclaimed, “Oh you’ve got quite a knot in here!” It isn’t a fucking knot, I wanted to say, it’s emotional scar tissue, but I let him keep digging while the rest of me snap, crackled and popped. This spot in the middle of my right ribs is my trigger area for a repressed memory that I once buried and would have completely forgotten about if my mother hadn’t asked twenty years after the fact: “What really happened that night you came home covered in sand?”

So this happened, and I did forget about it until my mom reminded me, and it’s not a huge deal in the scheme of things but it goes to show you about how times have changed somewhat, maybe, in that if it happened today I probably would have said something instead of kept it a secret. Anyway, I was 16, my parents took me to Florida for a vacation in February. I got a sunburn at one point during the week and I slathered on baby oil that night to ease the pain, which is stupid because I think it fries you some more, but we did dumb things back then. At night on the hotel strip which was on the beach, there was a 7-Eleven and a small playground. That greasy night I went out on my own and sat on the swings and a group of young dudes were hanging out trying to score beer from the store. I don’t know what the age limit was but I had been buying beer at the bodegas in Quebec since I squeezed my first zit. So I volunteered to buy it even though I was younger than all of them and sure enough I didn’t get ID’d. It’s all in the attitude and maybe my sunburn made me look 40.

So I made a bunch of friends that night, we drank the beer in the playground for a couple of hours. One dude seemed to like me. He was one of those strapping cornfed first generation of ‘Super Size” American boys with a baseball hat over a mullet. I told him I was Canadian and he said his favourite band was Rush. Ugh. In my personal opinion, Rush was the original Nickelback, that trilling Geddy Lee voice over those synthesizers was enough to me lunge for the radio dial and kill it, blechhh, ear rape. I might be wrong, so sue me, but I was into punk and was obsessed with Blondie, Bowie, and the Stranglers back then. This dude did not interest me at all but when it was time to go home, he opted to walk with me along the beach, which I think I thought was  gentlemanly.

We got to a dark spot on the beach and he asked me if I would give him a blow job, but without a question mark. “Give me a blow job,” he said.  I’m like,” WHAT? No…what are you even thinking? I don’t even like you!” And he got all weird and he tackled me.  I was face down in the the sand and he knelt on top of me, his knee pinning me down in THAT VERY SPOT merry massage therapist Juan was gleefully untangling some thirty years later. I was winded, I remember panicking because I couldn’t breathe and I was sure he broke a rib. He managed to get his pants down, and thinking back now, was he not afraid I was going to bite? Oh, I’m going to just take one look at his fructose fatty chode and want to tenderly place it in my mouth? My dad always said if I got myself in such a predicament to grab and squeeze and twist the balls, which I did, he squealed like Geddy Lee and I managed to slither away, all slippery from the baby oil still, and run home.

My mom asked me then why I was covered in sand and out of breath and I said I just tripped on the beach. And I really forgot all about it until she asked me again a few years back. Anyway, flash forward to last week and fucking Juan and his grind happy elbow and me face down on a massage table, my face smushed in the cradle, trying to breathe through the intense pain. I started coughing, which is the worst when you’re getting a massage, but he finally eased up I got to flip over which is the best part anyway. But no, he jostled something out of me, like my growling inner zombie child, and I started hacking up a lung. That was an entire week ago! I haven’t stopped coughing for fuck sake. And my fucking ribs are killing me.

I can’t tell if the experience was cathartic or what. “You prolly have pneumonia,” my ex-husband just said.  Great, and me without a drug plan. All I know is the next massage I get will be from a lady with sweet soothing fingers. I’ll leave those man hands for other things.

 

 

Mastering the Art of Living IRL (In Real Life, duh)

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It’s Springtime here in the Big Smoke, my pretties!  Except it’s still as cold and gross as the mysterious crusty smears on the sleeves of your parka that you need to get dry cleaned and thrown in the back of the closet. Like today. It’s your fault it’s still cold outside, you keep wearing that wretched thing and the weather complies. My friend from another village a five hour train-ride away came to visit last week and remarked, “Why is everyone here so fucking ugly?” That’s a good question and you can blame the wind and the baa-baaa black sheep wearing the same goddamned Canada Goose parkas but I think the ugly runs much deeper. It’s so metaphysical that it’s hard to pinpoint the exact root of the pustule but I’m sure it has something to do with mass sucking of The Man’s D (whoever that is) for the sake of obtaining granite countertops and stainless steel appliances. Everybody in this sad town strives for the same thing while whistling the same tune, and it’s all so disparagingly mediocre.

I guess I’m ugly, too, since I live here. But! At least I stopped with the black parka and now I’m layering it up with a charcoal grey hoodie. Baby steps. It’s not THAT cold, pussies, we can keep warm if we huddle and stop ignoring each other. I’m staaaaarved for the human contact. I’m ready to step out of the hermit-mode and fraternize with the real flesh beings, those who enjoy eating fried chicken and actually bleed real blood when you stab them. As opposed to the tricky internet motherfuckers, the ones you meet from OkCupid and Tinder, who scurry into The Cloud (wherever that is) like veiled chameleons because they spook easily. Although,there’s a certain appeal to that, I must say, because when they go silent farting into the ether, they simply cease to exist. Or they become fodder for your screenplay.

I’ve officially decided that I finally had too much Internet over the winter. Not because of my OkCupid addiction, I’m still working on my own personal Kinsey Report, and it’s a never ending scroll of fascination for moi. I have some more wild oats to sow before I settle down with my collection of Magic Wand attachments. It turns out In Real Life (IRL from now on) my heart more resilient than I originally thought, so this is good Internet usage for my research, otherwise known as vagine fieldwork. Let me have this one vice and I’ll cut back on the Facebook, I can’t handle it all the poop anymore (more on that later).

No, there are 3 distinct things have made me realize I need to reduce the hours of screen time and snap that MacBook shut and here they are:

1. I knew how to make “Truffle Butter” without having to google it. It was like the knowledge had been implanted in my brain by osmosis. The song came out and I’m like  “Oh yeah, truffle butter,” and thought nothing of it, where everyone else was all “Ewwww, I just googled “truffle butter” and it’s nasty.” Whatevs. Now, don’t get excited, I have never made truffle butter IRL but if I did, I would doctor the recipe and add some low-fat Cool Whip to lighten the flavour, it’s less sticky than the other brands. Still, it’s a bit disturbing that I am a walking urban dictionary, and I long for the days of innocence of when a bible study was just a bible study. And did not involve so much liquified solid waste.

2. I have komplicated and konfusing feelings toward Kanye West. A good chunk of my Internet time is spent on celebrity gossip sites even though I am proud to say I still could not pick Ariana Grande or Rita Ora out of a line-up. But! When I see the name, Kanye West, my heart rate goes up. And I feel I am discharging some potent hormones from various pores. When Kanye West does or says something douchey and the whole world is tweeting “Kanye needs to be banned from the Grammy’s 4evah,” I nod my head in agreement but deep inside, I am thinking: “Oh, Kanye” like the way a mom is pretend-mad but secretly tickled when their toddler does something charming and Instagram-worthy like putting lipstick on the dog. Sometimes when I’m not on the Internet and out IRL, like at the grocery store or hanging out in a yoga pose that doesn’t hurt, I find my mind happily wandering and my thought path always ends up at Kanye’s doorstep. SIGH. I wonder what he’s doing, what’s he wearing, is he keeping warm? What did he have for breakfast? Does he wash his hands after he goes to the bathroom and apply cocoa butter hand lotion? They get so dry. Is he flossing? Did he remember to pick Kim’s flesh-coloured sausage casing from the dry cleaners? Is he reading “Goodnight Moon” to Nori? I think if I ever saw Kanye IRL, I would spontaneously lactate. What is this unconditional love I feel? Am I his mother? See, what I mean, isn’t this krazy? And embarrassing?

3. Okay the third thing is the clincher, as if truffle butter and wanting to be Kanye’s mom wasn’t enough to send me to rehab. On the Facebook, I’m in a closed group that I don’t remember even joining. It’s all about my neighbourhood and the informative goings on that individual citizens post, like as examples: the Tim Hortons is closing down but a new one is opening up, a certain naturopathic doctor is a charlatan (umm, duh), lost dog, found dog, etc. Some people randomly post antiquated memes and that talking dog video from the middle ages. I figure these folks are lonely shut-ins and want to feel the gentle rush of “likes.” There’s nothing wrong with that, I can scroll by most of  those and enjoy that talking dog video for the billionth time because it never gets old. But then something happened on the page when the weather got (only somewhat) warmer and the snow started to melt/evaporate. The citizens began posting pictures of exposed dog shit that they found on the streets. Whoa.  One particularly righteous woman wrote about how she was walking down the street with her precious baby in a fucking stroller, and she saw countless dog turds as though she was the fecal police writing a report of the most heinous crime since Sandy Hook, she clearly needs to lock her stupid family up in a panic room until all the shit gets scooped up.  HELLO, BITCH,THIS IS HAS BEEN THE NATURAL PART OF THE FOULNESS OF SPRING SINCE WAAAAY BEFORE THE INTERNET, WE’VE ALL BEEN AROUND THIS BLOCK FOR GENERATIONS.  What kind of thought process makes someone go for a walk outside in the fresh air, get so incensed over some random dog poops that she comes home, gets her sleeping baby out of the stroller, goes in the house, shimmies the squirmy baby out of the snowsuit which takes approximately the better part of an hour, dumps the screaming baby in Neglecto-matic swing, stuffs a binky in its mouth, pours herself a glass of boxed Chardonnay, then hops on the Internet to express her outrage? Her outrage becomes my outrage, but for the opposite reason. The Internet is a sacred place for cute kittens and porn, and maybe some recipes, not a forum for a bitch’s whining over a few innocuous mounds of dog shit that will turn into green grassy splendour come May. It’s all biodegradable, you dumb twat, just shut the fuck up and stop complaining, I want to write on her post but I don’t, I shut my pie hole and blog about it instead. Which I realize is another big fat waste of interweb energy that I am foisting upon you and we are all a part of the never-ending circle of ridiculous Internet pettiness.. As an aside, just a quick life hack tip for dog owners: If your dog is on a raw food diet, and really why would you want to feed your beloved dog anything else? The turds are much more compact and dry up and then turn to innocuous white dust within days if you neglect to pick them up. Sweet. Anyway, I hate this neighbourhood mom with the same fucked up intensity and passion that I love Kanye West. And I know it’s crazy but the feelings are real. So yeah, that’s enough Internet for moi.

I think we all need to get outside and get lost in the wonder of living IRL. And look at each other straight in the face and stop letting our fingers do our communicating because things go awry so easily. Let’s use our actual voices. We should be like the girls on “Broad City” stand on top of the hill and yell out at the top of the lungs: “WANNA FOOOOOOOOOK?!” I double dog dare you. We can always run away.

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Timing is Everything According to Cupid

Kristin Peterson blog

Well, well, well…this has been a bullshit winter.  Weather-wise, IT’S SO COLD! I’ve been wearing the same thing every day for the last two months.  I find when I’m so cold, I don’t even care anymore…about anything, except for you people, my internet lovers.  And fried chicken.

Valentine’s Day came and went! I don’t care at all about romance and stuff but I always cook up something special on Vagina-Lonely-Day because it takes my mind off my harrowing despair otherwise known as celibacy.  This year, I mastered the art of fried chicken!  It’s all about the brine!  Who knew? I made about 6 batches in total, since the Toronto Star published the recipe of The Stockyards, and fuck, it is HARD.  No joke, it takes 2 days to make, at least.  First you have to soak the pieces in brine in the fridge….and do you even know what brine is?  It’s salty, sugar water. Like the tears of a sad clown. NO, I DID NOT GET SAD ON VALENTINE’S DAY!  I’m so over it.

Anyway, after the chicken is done its 48 hour briny bath, you soak it in buttermilk where it luxuriates with some spices for a few hours while you watch something on Netflix. Do NOT do your nails at this point because what comes next is more tactile than you might want to get with raw chicken. But I have nothing else going on so I got my fingers into it. After the buttermilk soak, you coat the chicken with flour.  It is so messy!  But worth it.  I don’t have a deep fryer, I just use a pot of vegetable oil on the stove and dump the pieces in after you have heated it up for longer than you can stand. Hot oil doesn’t really bubble, it just swirls around all impatient-like. This is where I have gone wrong, putting the pieces in before the oil is hot enough, then the coating comes off. But still, it is fried chicken and you almost can never go wrong no matter how you cook it.  Sigh.

Who am I kidding? I am a bitter old cow who needs a brine bath and a buttermilk soak and then dumped in a deep fryer.  I am jealous of chicken.

A couple of weeks ago a friend of mine decided to try on-line dating, I told her about Okcupid because if you follow this blog, I got what I wanted last summer.  She is more interested in dating an age appropriate man so I think when she first logged in, neither of us had any real hope.  But off she went, into the deep, dark woods of the interwebz and what do you know?  She went on a coffee date and had an actual good time.  Then came another date.

And then she said:  “KP, I am smitten!”

And I said:  “Smitten????? What the fuck does that mean?”  I don’t even….

She explained that when she sees him, her heart skips a beat.  Is it scary?  Yes, it is scary.  THIS IS CUPID’S ARROW STABBING YOU IN YOUR HEART! It’s an actual thing,  Apparently it is scary because your old, jaded self becomes powerless.  That is so awesome I can’t stand it!  I want that feeling!

I have crushes, minor and fleeting…like the cable man who saved my Peachtree from the digital force crushing out my analog signals, the drama!  It lasted an hour.  I have a kind of crush on a dude I encounter in my daily activities but he is married or something and my heart does not skip a beat when I see him.  My loins get all fired up though, and when I talk to him, I allow the verbal diarrhea to spew out of my mouth which is awesome in its own right, but it is not SMITTEN.  And he probably thinks I’m an idiot.  I realize this heart beat skipping trick has to be MUTUAL in order for it to be scary.

I want to be smitten AND scared.

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That’s Lorelei Gilmore, having an impromptu session with a shrink in the back of a car.  But that is also me, I’m tired and impatient and I have been growing my hair out to no avail.

With that querulous attitude, yesterday I put up a new profile on Okcupid.  Why is it that I can write a 1500 word blog post for you people and be my most happy self doing it but I can’t fill out profile form to save my life?  Ugh, I am the worst, but do the men even read these things?  Don’t they just look at pictures?  Some creepy mofo on Facebook accused me of putting up old photos of myself when I just took one on Tuesday and the previous one was from September and he has never even met me in person.  I am only guilty of Hipstomatic filtering, but who isn’t?  If you want to see pores just use your imagination.  They look like moon craters, dude.

So I put my thing up and waited and then like, nothing.  An hour went by…is this thing even on?  Last summer, I hadn’t even finished writing the profile when the locusts came.  That is not bragging, that is just the law of interwebz nature.  This time around people were perusing me in silence, it shows who checked out your profile but no one actually said anything.  What the hell? I put a link to this blog so they could be dazzled by the polka dotted background at least.  Then someone wrote: “Your blog is really funny, you should right as a living.”  I know, right?  WRITE.  And yes,  I know, I know, I am the Queen of Typos but I couldn’t get passed it.

So I took matters in my own hands and went trolling, trolling, trolling.  I cast my net at AGE APPROPRIATE men folk because I don’t think I could ever get this elusive smitten feeling with a cub, no offence twentysomethings but you don’t know who the original Starsky and Hutch are.

So I wrote to two men, they both had really good profiles.  One was a HERMIT!  I am a hermit!  Surely we could hermit together.  I picked out our wedding china as I wrote him this quick hello:  “I like your profile, it’s very clever and witty…”  I sent it, waited…I could see him checking out my profile (this is like making eye contact at a virtual bar)…and then I waited some more and NOTHING.  He did not respond.  I was sure he would be excited by our mutual love of HBO.  But no, it wasn’t enough to hermit with.  Hermits probably need social butterflies in order to not turn into Unabombers, right?  So maybe it’s not meant to be.

The next guy was really stern looking but he rocked a plaid shirt.  He was an “almost vegetarian” and he sold his cars and now rides a bicycle as his main mode of transportation.  I know, slightly disturbing, cyclists are a weird breed but I was a bike courier in my heyday. His long winded profile read like a novella but I could get behind that, it meant he was probably literate and could read my blog and appreciate my ramblings.  So I sent him a hello note.  Watched him check out my profile, again, just like the other dude did and I waited and AGAIN NOTHING!

What the fuck?  Then I realized: fried chicken.  I wrote something about fried chicken on my opening line which probably offended his “almost vegetarian” sensibilities.  Oh well, whatevs…love me, love my fried chicken.

So I deleted my profile this morning.  Seriously, this pheromone rush I seek is best left in the hands of that lazy ass little Cupid boy to get his act together.  I just might have to wait a little longer, or not….maybe I’ll fry up some more chicken EVEN THOUGH IT TAKES SO FUCKING LONG.

A Hooker’s Guide to Self Actualization

American Gothic Barbie and KenThe other day, my friend sent me a link to an article in the Globe and Mail by Margaret Wente.  I never read the “Mop and Pail” anymore because they systematically dump their good writers and keep the shitty ones like this dumb bitch who writes this sophomoric article titled “the awful truth about being single.”  I put a link to it but I wouldn’t bother clicking on it if I were you because this is it in a nutshell:

Mary Tyler Moore was a trail blazer who paved the way for modern single ladies to live groovy lives in Liberty Village with their little dogs and social media outlets.  But when these young hos hit 35 and are still single ladies, TIC TOC ROARS THE CLOCK!  Lonely days, lonely nights!  Time to get some cats!  Single life is over-rated and pathetic, not glamourous like “Sex and the City,” it is more like “Girls” where people are ugly and love is a battleground.  Carrie Bradshaw from SATC says:  “The most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself. And if you find someone to love the you love, well, that’s just fabulous.”  But Margaret Wente’s epiphany is that the road to self actualization isn’t through independence but from a relationship that requires sorting someone else’s socks and squeezing the zits on another person’s back. There is nothing more rewarding!

And she finishes it all off with this Stepfordesque quote:  “You will be astonished by the person you become. And you wouldn’t exchange the richness of your married life for anything.”

It looks like somebody has been talking her meds!

This enraged all my single friends. She has set women back 50 years! I have to say, I do like all her tv references but clearly she doesn’t really know her “Sex and the City” or she would have known about all the trial and tribulations the characters go through like the sexual droughts, loneliness, poor choices, depressed vaginas, break ups, and dating men with these problems:  the politician who wanted to be peed on, the dude with the funky tasting spunk, the premature ejaculator, teeny tiny dick, horse-sized dick, Mr. Pussy,verbally abuse man, straight gay man, public sex guy, and the list goes on.  So how about analyzing this SATC case study, Margaret Wente:  When Charlotte gets MARRIED for the first time, her husband can’t even get a proper boner!  That is just SO RICH, you would never want to trade that for a golden shower with that silver fox who plays Roger Sterling on Madmen!  Fuck no, let’s just stay home and sort Trey’s socks and iron his plaid boxer shorts while he masturbates in the bathroom to Juggs.  How fulfilling.

Fictional tv characters aside, there is probably not a great deal of difference between the loneliness of a single person than of a married person. You can feel lonely when you are part of a couple and that is probably even worse type of lonely than if you are single and don’t want to be. Which do you think is more pathetic:  That couple who sit and eat by the window of a restaurant and have nothing to say to each other all evening or the single guy who sits at the bar alone on a Monday night because he can’t stand being alone in his apartment?  You can decide for yourself, but I’d rather be the single dude or his female counterpart who is home with her cats watching Mike and Molly.  You just know that the couple who have nothing to say to each other are secretly hoping that the other one chokes on a fat scallop and drops dead:  “I tried the Heimlich, I really did!  It must have really stuck!”

If loneliness is something you see as a foreboding disabling force that will send you into the depths of despair then maybe you really do need some quality alone time for self actualization.  Just saying.

I’m so self-actualized, by the way, I’m inside out.  Fuck Margaret Wente, I’m a single lady and I love it!

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Don’t think just cuz I’m single, I’m an embittered dried up old hooker that I don’t believe love or romance. If I ever met the real-life version of Luke Danes from the “Gilmore Girls,” I would shoot that unicorn with a stun gun and if I had to, I would keep him smothered in my cavernous cleavage in a half-conscious twilight state so he wouldn’t bolt. I do think good couples exist. They are just not most couples.  I think we live too long for relationships that are supposed to last until you death do you part. Those unions were designed for farm folk where the women died in childbirth and the men remarried their line up of teenage sisters.

For most people, marriage is not very realistic. If you insist on making a legal union out of your love/lust confusion, it should be like a driver’s license and up for renewal every 4 years.  Then if it doesn’t work out, you wouldn’t feel like such a failure and you wouldn’t have to say DIVORCE, you’d just say you didn’t renew and then move on. Set yourselves free so you can even out the playing field for the rest of us.

There is no shame in being single.  Take some time, hold your own hand and get to know yourself, and fear not the loneliness because once you master that, you can probably handle the boredom of a marriage.  Here are some pro tips to help you on your way to self actualization:

1. Don’t read too many self-help books. You will suffocate in bullshit. If you are going to read one book, read The Four Agreements by don Miguel Ruiz, it’s super short and you can read it in an afternoon and it’s really all you need to help you navigate through your inner journey.  Dude keeps adding new agreements, ie. The Fifth Agreement!  What is that? Four was a perfect amount: Be impeccable, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, and do your best.  Master those and stay gold, Pony Boy!

Again, keep your self-help literature to a minimum otherwise you will become one of those people who keep posting daily affirmations on Facebook because they have become overly cleansed by power thinking.  In reality, they have become powerless unless there is a mantra to chant or a platitude to post on the fridge.

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2.  Don’t forget your friends.  Not just the single ones, even the ones with spouses need friends to talk to about their shit, too, and they are secretly jealous of you. Make sure you have your phone plan set up for unlimited talk time with these hos because you’ll be yapping for hours and if you are using a cellphone, use earbuds because you might get a tumour before you get self actualized.

3. Don’t cyberstalk an ex-lover!  You need to dump them from Facebook and stop following them on Twitter and Instagram.  Not knowing is better than knowing in this case, ignorance is power.  When you do find out something that you didn’t want to know, you might be tempted to drink a bottle of vodka, eat a tub of ice cream, and have sex with the nearest person to which I believe are all valid responses.  A little bit of shame goes a long way to help pave your path to enlightenment, everyone is entitled to a fat, drunk slut phase.  Or as I prefer to call myself, a bloated bon vivant.  Don’t worry, that phase will end and you will replace it with something healthier like yoga or cutting your own hair.

4.  Take yourself on a date.  You know what is so great about going to a movie by yourself?  You can sit where you want and eat all the popcorn and use all the arm rests and no one will distract you with their incessant leg crossing, nose blowing, coughing, stupid questions,etc.  Going out alone will become really easy to get used to but don’t get carried away with yourself, it’s not considered “PDA” when you masturbate in public, it’s a misdemeanor even though most of us can agree it’s way less offensive than watching two people play tonsil hockey.

I’m not really sure when it is that you actually know when you have become truly “self actualized” and who really knows what it means, but when you can handle being by yourself for extended periods of time, you are doing some fine work, keep on truckin’.

This is my favourite poem of all time since Grade 8 for your inspiration. This dude has it all going on (including a grammar error on the first line):

Danse Russe by William Carlos Williams

If I when my wife is sleeping
and the baby and Kathleen
are sleeping
and the sun is a flame-white disc
in silken mists
above shining trees,—
if I in my north room
dance naked, grotesquely
before my mirror
waving my shirt round my head
and singing softly to myself:
“I am lonely, lonely.
I was born to be lonely,
I am best so!”
If I admire my arms, my face,
my shoulders, flanks, buttocks
against the yellow drawn shades,—

Who shall say I am not
the happy genius of my household?

Drive: The Satin Jacket Rules

This isn’t a film review *per se* so don’t get anxious, I will turn this off into a tangent that we can all enjoy. But I did see “Drive” and I am obsessing over it. I’m not going to give stuff away even though you probably will never see it and if you saw it, you scratched your head and said: “Meh! It wasn’t all that!” Or if you were like my friend, Sean, you tweeted out into the universe: “#Drive was shit!” But I loved this movie in an “anchovy way”, and I will explain this metaphor. There was weirdness, it was awkward in parts, and clichéd with all the obvious character archetypes, but it had style, heart, and a mission. The heist-gone-awry genre never gets old. It can be comedic or film-noir. This movie was a bit of the latter and completely mirthless. Normally I hate dour films: Black Swan, Blechhh-erinas. But Drive stars Ryan Gosling: The Panty Creamer of the Decade, maybe even the millennium. He is different in everything he does but he always oozes coolness. EVEN WHEN HE IS WEARING A WHITE SATIN QUILTED BOMBER JACKET WITH A SCORPION EMBROIDERED ON THE BACK! What was up with that? And when was the last time you went to a movie and said to yourself: “Why is the font on the credits so inappropriate?” THE FONT! You shouldn’t really be noticing font. But it was pink, girly 80s style (see movie poster above), as was the bomber jacket. And so was the soundtrack. If it weren’t for the cars and the cellphones, I would have thought it was a period piece and Eddie Murphy would appear. The retro vibe of this movie was almost too distracting, but who am I to judge? I am right now wearing a dolman sleeve sweater with rhinestones on the front. The fact that the white satin scorpion jacket kept getting bloody and clean again made me start thinking that it was more a symbol, a hero costume of sorts. At one point, Driver brings up the tale of the scorpion and the frog but doesn’t elaborate because he is mostly mute and barely strings two sentences together. Aesop Fable Wiki recap: The scorpion negotiates a ride on the frog’s back to get him across the stream but stings him half-way, putting both their lives in peril. “Why did you do that?” asks the frog, and the scorpion replies, “Because it is in my nature.” Is Ryan Gosling the scorpion with the stinging nature or do we take it literally and he is the frog with the scorpion on his back? I THOUGHT ABOUT THIS ALL THE WAY HOME!

So many things about this movie bothered me that I had an epiphany. Why do we have to “like” things? And why does everything have to be so pleasant? Do our lives just have LOL along without conflict? When I first time I had an anchovy, all bare naked out of a tin, I thought it was out-of-this world disgusting but it had such an impact on me that I thought about it long after I ate it. The strange hairy texture, the extreme saltiness, and how it was dry and oily at the same time, I had to have it again. In the right context, on a Pizza Neapolitan sunk into a bed of mozzarella with some black olives on the side, an anchovy is a two thumbs up. Anchovies are bacon of the sea. You can quote me.

I thought more about the anchovy theory and how it applies to relationships. The other day, a friend told me I should try on-line dating with a certain dating site that we might as well call “eNo-Anchovies-Please.” eNAP, for short. If you have been following this blog, you might know I am part dog and only interested in the sense of smell (not just the anus!) when picking a mate. But my friend said: “No, eNAP is different, is based on compatibility and they match you with people with the same traits and values!”

“So it’s a Sure Thing?’ I asked.

“Pretty much. They ask you a bunch of questions, and through the magic of science, they send you only people who are suitable,” she explained. This is how she met the dude is seeing right now (it’s been 2 years!) and even though she has a job where she meets hundreds of people a month, her sense of smell didn’t do the trick. She seems happy with this guy but she is one of those women that anyone would want to be around. In fact, I love spending time with her, that I would be more than thrilled to be her anchovy. It might be too salty at first, but we’d get used to it.

I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I had already tried eNAP last year, when they had a free Labour Day weekend (eNap costs money, which makes it more legit than the free dating sites). My matchups were really uninteresting to me. It was a depressing reflection of myself, perhaps. If I wanted compatibility, why not just stand in front of the mirror, eat a Pizza Neapolitan, and then do that secret thing I like to do with my ears when I’m alone? Do I want sameness? Or do I want someone who irks me enough to say “Why are you wearing that stupid satin jacket?” I think I’d rather be part of a scenario that was not so contrived, and more incongruous, like maybe a frog with a scorpion on its shoulders windsurfing on an anchovy’s back. In any case, it’s all about getting out of your comfort zone, I guess.

Enough of my ruminations…just go see “Drive!” Let me know what you think!

The Wind in The Gym: Tales of The Bunny and The Rat

You know that stupid Lululemon bag with all the affirmations written over it: “Friends are more important than money,” “Breathe Deeply,” “Dance, Sing, Floss, and Travel,” et cetera? You probably have it, or just like the rat adage, you are no more than twenty feet away from one. It’s a real life urban meme, your cleaning lady carries one as does your lawyer, pot dealer, and girl guide cookie distributor. Mine is hanging in my office. And yes, I do have an office, which is more like an orifice, a black hole filled with bomb shelter material and also where the washing machine lives and the window to the back deck where I keep track of the weather. The bag hangs on one of those Ikea metal shelves and we mock each other daily. “Get off your fat ass and go to the gym,” The bag greets me in the morning. I don’t even have to look up at it, I’ve memorized its repertoire, “Do one thing a day that scares you?” I sneer, “Why don’t you haul yourself over the deck and go dance in the wind, American Beauty?” In fact, Bag and I are like that married couple in that movie. Remember the one with Annette Bening and Kevin Spacey? The wife is a rigid and righteous real estate agent (LOL) and the husband becomes the pot-smoking, pedo-bear. He is the awesome one. He decides he is in love with a teenage cheerleader and gets all buff to impress her. Things go awry in a tragedy of errors, proving my theory that Karma is a fat cat on the Khardashian payroll. Neither here nor there, I am Kevin Spacey. Bag is my bitch and I’m not going to let her tell me what to do but! I will go to the gym! I can put all my sweaty stuff in Bag and make her useful.

I am no stranger to the gym. In fact, mine is my second home. It’s more like a club because it has a fitness area, tennis and squash courts, a spa, a restaurant, and a parking lot. I’ve been a member for 14 years and started going when Freddy was a toddler-type. Before that I was going to a rec center and doing cavewoman aerobics 3 times a week. When I joined my gym, it was like I had died and gone to heaven! I went 7 days a week the first month, they had daycare! Kids could go in a room for two hours while mama could play! And I did: I spun, did step class, learned to use machines, and I was there for two weeks before I even realized they had showers! And a sauna! And a hot tub! What a bumpkin I was. Six weeks went by, and it was mid-September, and before I knew it, I had lost 15 pounds. In turn, I gained a monster. That was when my mojo came back. It was a force I couldn’t control. It was an insatiable creature, filled with sexual hallucinations, with eyes in back of its head and a hole in its heart. And I became a gym bunny. Slash predator.

What’s the difference between a gym bunny and a gym rat? They both run in packs but they have different agendas. The bunny is social and can be found in fitness classes. The rat works out on his own, on a treadmill or in the iron room. The bunny looks around and notices what people are doing, wearing, and talking about. The rat doesn’t have to look around, he can smell camel toe. Watch out for that rat, bunny! His teeth are sharp and he talks out of his ass! I wish I could tell my younger self. Bunnies will turn into sloths, rats keep moving and upgrading their cars. The proof is in the parking lot. And that’s where all the real gym action takes place.

So yes, September has come, and like it or not, it’s a new start. And my mojo rests under a “layer of gelatinous complacency,” that’s what I’m calling fat now, it’s more accurate. Mama wants her mojo back! Not the crazy monster one but a tamed, refined, wiser version. The tail is in there somewhere, I can feel it burrowed, tickling my fourth eye chokra, that one that no one taps in yoga class but we all know is there. The only way to get it out, is to go back to the gym where it was born the first time. And why don’t I rename this blog The Mojo Whisperer? Anyway, I’ve been going every day more or less and spinning and even found an old-style step class which was hard! How did I ever put 3 risers underneath that thing? (that’s what she said!) What doesn’t kill you, hasn’t killed you yet. Put that slogan on your bag, Bag. Go dance like no one is watching: