Saturday, May 30, 2009

Pop-Culture Saturday

I'll blog about something super-deep and inspiring soon. For instance, last night I discovered that I might actually prefer Billy Joel over Elton John. Quite the revelation.

In the meantime....

I Heart Kids

Harry Potter > Twilight

I read Twilight. I'll probably chat about it here. It's pretty much porn for teen girls. Dangerous. I'm glad it wasn't around when I was 16.

(via overanalyzed words)

Psycho in the Streets

At his best.

See Star Trek

And then maybe see it again. J.J. Abrams is my hero.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

"I want to go to there."

I am so over the rain. And computers. And walls.

(via iLOVE)

Team Betty

Archie and Betty were made for each other. Or at least I thought they were. Maybe Archie doesn't deserve her. The jerk.

Betty, I weep with you.

Issue #600 is not going to be a pretty one.

But whether you're in Betty or Veronica's corner – and let's face it, most of us have a gut response – Archie's choice of life-partner urges us to look inward. What does the couple we root for say about us?

Perhaps more than we realize, relationships expert Marion Goertz says.

“People who vote for Veronica-Archie are the idealists, the people who say, ‘I'm voting for the glitz, the glamour, the high energy, the sexiness, the ideal [and] they might not even care so much that it'll only last five years,'” says the Toronto-based registered family, marriage and sex therapist.

Those who yearn to see Archie and Betty get hitched take a more realistic, traditional view, she says. They're more grounded, are thinking long term and have more of a sense of “for always and forever.”

Yep. I'm grounded and thinking long-term. I'm traditional. I'm Betty.

After playing games with their hearts for 67 YEARS, he ditches the heart of gold for the vixen. My money's on a broken engagement.

Betty, get yourself a real man. Don't let Archie Andrews come crawling back.

Okay, I'm done now. And determined to never date a fictional redhead.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

YouTube Tuesday: Organ Donation

Milton Green needs a kidney. This makes me happy.

"When someone starts talking in the middle of a song, you know it's serious."

P.S. I want to be friends with Tina Fey's friends. Tina, let me into your circle. Please.

Monday, May 25, 2009

God, I'm Lonely

Art at the Steam Whistle Brewery

Sometimes I listen to my iPod on shuffle instead of, A, creating playlists of awesomeness, or, B, making a real decision as to what I feel like hearing. It's a great way to discover never-listened-to tracks on half-loved albums. But sometimes the random order will mess with my mood. I'll be bopping down the street to a fun little rock tune when all of a sudden-- WHAM! --William Fitzsimmons breaks my heart with his soulful lament: "Oh, God, my bed is empty."

I dedicate this photo to him.

A little Willie Fitz sadness for your evening. Divorce ballads are the saddest of them all.

I would like to give that man a hug.

Doors Open Toronto

A perfect Sunday in the city. Lemonade at Campbell House. Beer at Steam Whistle Brewery. Trains. Fort York. Sunshine. New friends.

Aside: I'm officially addicted to walking. I've walked approximately 35 km over the last 3 days. So while I'm looking up local hiking trails, I'm also fantasizing about walking the Camino de Santiago. Yes, I dream of a 30-day 900km pilgrimage in Spain. Doesn't everyone?

Yesterday, after a fascinating tour of the brewery, I gave a stranger my leftover beer tickets:
You're an angel, you know that? An angel. Tell your parents you're an angel.
Well, Mom and Dad, it's been confirmed. As if you had any doubt.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Green Lantern: Fan Edition

Fans are amazing. They should be the ones making the movies, as evidenced by this fan-made trailer for Green Lantern. Even Nathan Fillion thinks this is brilliant.

(If you're on Twitter, follow him at @NathanFillion. Pretend you're friends. That's what I do.)

Also in fan-made corner, there's the Thundercats trailer. It, too, is quite excellently imagined. There are a lot of creative geniuses out there with too much time on their hands. Who would have thought that Troy-meets-Garfield could look so cool?

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Random Saturday Musings

I Beg to Differ

this is my heart. it is a good heart.

I'm by no means an accomplished songwriter, but I am super-confident that most people have had a song written about them. Not necessarily a love song, but a song nonetheless. And most of these songs will never be played for an audience. Unless that audience is Boy Behind the Wall. I'm pretty sure he stays up late, his ear against the wall, listening to me play.

J'aime Lire

Note to self: read Enid Blyton in French.

Truth On TV
There is a thin line between love and hate, and it turns out that line is a scarf.

~Rachel, Friends
Skinny Me

I stepped on the scale this morning. I must have reset it when cleaning yesterday, as it displayed my weight in kilograms instead of pounds. For a moment, I thought I had lost 70 pounds overnight. Diet secret of the stars.

The Sound of Silence

This movie was not "magical." It was psychological torture. I watched it in high school with a girlfriend. Our friendship was unique in that every single movie night we held was guaranteed to feature the worst movies ever made. This was one of them. Maybe it was because my friend's parents were divorced and it hit too close to home. Maybe it's because I find the silent treatment both cruel and unproductive. I don't know.

I also don't know why the film popped into my head today. But it did.

Why Does it Look Like a BOMB?!

There are no words. Okay, maybe one: INSANITY. Girls, a timer on the bra solves nothing. Wearing your desperation will never be trendy.

Swim Like It's 1960

I need a new swimsuit. Preferably one that doesn't make me do the self-loathing dance in the fitting room. I'm not-so-secretly hoping my Mad Men infatuation will translate into my swimwear. And that a lifestyle of poolside cocktails will follow.

Jesus Forgives, Right?

I'm skipping church tomorrow so that I can sample beer at the Steam Whistle Brewery before listening to opera at St. Lawrence Hall. Would Jesus drink beer on a Sunday morning? Maybe.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I Heart Banned Books

source: 9GAG

Banned books are usually the best ones. Or so has been my literary experience. Check out this list of 50 Banned Books That Everyone Should Read. Most of my favorite novels find themselves on the list. I'm not sure what that says about me.

Of the books I've read on the list (quite a few, actually), these are the ones that have stuck. That still resonate with me. That evoke a pretty powerful reaction whenever I think about them. Or that pop into my head when I have little reason to think about them at all. Some scenes and images just won't leave me alone.
  • Catcher in the Rye. I love Salinger's tone. Makes me want to write.
  • Lord of the Flies. I love Golding's allegory. Even though it makes me a little uncomfortable. And I'm obsessed with stranded-on-an-island folks. Obviously. (Where was Desmond in Lost's finale? Anyone? Bueller?)
  • Bridge to Terabithia. I cried. In class. The whole imaginary-world-collides-with-juvenile-tragedy got to me. I was 11. And will probably make my future children read it at 11, too. And then make them play outside.
  • The Giver. I love this book. Every little magical moment. Every terrifying heart-in-throat page. (Does it endorse killing? Maybe.)
  • Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl. In the most melodramatic days of my youth, I wanted to be her. Maybe that's why I have stacks of journals lying everywhere. (Apparently this was banned for being "sexually charged" and pornographic. What the--?!)
  • To Kill a Mockingbird. I love Atticus. My literary hero. Almost convinced me to study law. I also love Gregory Peck. Another dead boyfriend.
  • Of Mice and Men. I don't love Lenny. Or George. But I can't ignore them. And I've written more essays entitled "Of ___ and ___" than I can count. I owe Steinbeck a lot. Namely, my student loan.
  • Little Women. I. Love. Little. Women. Front-to-back. On my personal top-3-novels-of-all-time list. I would say I want to be Jo, the adventurous independent writer with crazy-big dreams, good intentions and bad hair, but I wouldn't have turned down Laurie. So no, I will never morph into the fictional heroine. Not completely, anyway.
  • In Cold Blood. I love the innovation of the true-crime-meets-novel. And the meticulous research. And Capote's personal obsession with his own material. (Um, 8000 pages of notes?!) And the Harper Lee connection makes me love To Kill a Mockingbird more. The circle of book-life.
I need to finish the list. I'm slightly embarrassed that I've never read A Handmaid's Tale. Perhaps that should be next. After The Great Gatsby.

Books > blogs, as much as I hate to admit it. I think it's time to create a summer reading list. Before bad television and Toronto humidity fry my brain.

Oh, and if I ever write a novel, please ban it. Please.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

YouTube Tuesday: Newsies Forever

ME: Not enough of my friends appreciate Newsies.
JOEL: How many would be enough?
ME: 95%.
I weep for today's youth. They will only know Christian Bale as a star. They didn't get to embrace the quirky career before the cape. And when they do discover his earlier gems, they'll view them as before-he-was-famous flicks, not as priceless treasures independent of his recent success.

Best call to strike in a Disney film: "The World Will Know"

Best evidence the director/choreographer was taught by Gene Kelly: "Seize the Day [Reprise]"

"Best" use of Bill Pullman's vocal cords: "King of New York"

My best friend and I used to call cute boys "muckety-mucks." A reference to this song, not the actual definition of the word. Did I ever mention that I was really cool once upon a time?

P.S. This scene is why I didn't buy Bill Pullman as president in Independence Day.

P.P.S. Robert Duvall is also in the movie. He does not sing or dance. Disappointing, really.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Not-Long-Enough Weekend

When I was in high school, Victoria Day weekend meant pitching a tent at Stayner Camp, dodging water balloons being hurled by adorably immature strangers, lining up for cold showers at midnight, stalking not-quite-famous bands, and playing real-life Foosball in the middle of an open field. (You line up in rows, tie each row of teenagers together, and hope you don't die as balls attack you from every direction.)

I'm now too old for sleepless camping in May. Frost and tents do not belong together. Call me in a month or so.

This weekend, I crashed at my parents' place. I took my MacBook but did not blog. I took my camera but did not take pictures. I just was.

I drank coffee. And more coffee. I insulted a family friend in Portuguese. I confirmed that "doofus" and "dufus" are both legitimate spellings of the word. I played games quasi-competitively. I indulged in barbecue-y excellence. I chatted theology at length with my parents' friends who then listed off potential boyfriend possibilities for yours truly. I caught the late screening of Star Trek with my brother. I had a Toronto Project '02 flashback at church. (Funny how I can be nostalgic for a specific summer in the city in which I live.) I went for a two-hour walk with my mom, stopping by the waterfront to ponder my quarter-life existence. I ate ice cream on the back patio, thought about gardening, and waxed poetic about the agelessness of Winona Ryder. Oh, and Joel tried to balance a can of Pringles on my head. Fail.

Because I chose to just live the weekend rather than document it, most of the genius conversations went untranscribed. But a few moments deserve acknowledgment.

Smells Like Teen Spirit
I'm putting on perfume. Mom walks by.
ME: Shoot. Do I smell like you?
Mom looks at my bottle. It's the same as hers.
MOM: Yes.
ME: No wonder I'm single. I smell like a married middle-aged woman with three adult children.

Calling In Dead

ME: I dare you to call in sick.
JOEL: Yes, I was hit by a truck covered in anthrax.

Movies Get In the Way

ME: Aren't we going to Star Trek?
MOM: Sorry, I want to get on with my evening.
ME: That's what I'm going to tell the next guy who asks me to the movies.

Act Your Age

And from someone who has known me since junior high:
You haven't changed a bit.
This could be the ultimate compliment. Or the ultimate insult.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Incriminating Paper Trails

I write. A lot. It's how I process things. Actually, I'm a verbal processor, but living alone has honed by ability to use the written word to the same effect. So you can probably piece together most of my "brain life" by snooping through the notebooks and scraps of paper left in my wake.

The number of unsent letters and emails is startling. I'm thinking of compiling them into a series of monologues. Or a one-act play. The most recent attempt at do-not-send correspondence started off friendly, turned angry, and concluded with a soul-bearing apology. Like I said, I process this way. 

Today I found this note. I left it attached to my headphones at work over a year ago. Man, I'm a paper-trail nightmare. And apparently pretty passive-aggressive.

To whom this may concern,
(If you're sitting here, that's you.)

I have new headphones. Do not use them. The old ones (which you used even though they were broken and MINE) are in headphone heaven.

If you need your own pair, talk to **** or ******.

Pretend this is kindergarten. Don't share headgear.

Subtitle well, my friend.

At least I remember writing it. Sometimes I have no recollection. Not long ago, when I was sorting through stacks of sheet music, I uncovered a half-written song. And I have no idea who or what inspired it.

I can't go back now
Thanks to the point of no return
I can't backtrack now
Just tag this as a lesson learned
I can't pretend now
I'm the girl you think you need
And I can't defend now
All this inconsistency

For a rather neurotic gal such as myself, you'd think this would trigger something. Nope. Maybe it was the ill-fated coffee date with the actor? The non-boyfriend I had to break up with over creepy emails? Maybe I was channeling someone else's pain? No clue.

I don't know if I should publish a book or invest in a paper shredder.

Don't get me started on to-do lists....

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Lost Before Blog

A girl's gotta have priorities. Unfortunately for you, Lost trumps the blog. And so I shall sit on my couch, Jack's blank expression mirrored on my face, and say goodbye to my island friends until next season. The last season. Ever. And then I'll get back to being my entertaining cyber-self.

After 2010, I may not have use for a television.

Please watch TV tonight. Do it for the children.

I'd like to point out that the photo and text in this entry give very little away. Because I have friends who are now officially AN ENTIRE SEASON BEHIND. And I can't spoil it for them. There are rules to friendship.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Interviewed: Me

Wanna know all about my life as a subtitler? Head on over to Jason Boyett's blog and read all about it. And then stick around. 'Cause he has some great stuff to say.

The timing couldn't be more perfect. Because as of tomorrow, my working-for-a-living world will look significantly different. Subtitles will only bookend my weeks, sprinkling my Mondays and Fridays with snippets of television greatness. Never fear, I'll still be writing in the midweek. But the words will be mine this time. (Details will follow shortly. Pinkie swear.)

Cue Hamlet's craziness (preferably with Kenneth Branagh's face): "Words, words, words."

Oh, Shakespeare. Always relevant. Always.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

A Disney Love Life: Cinderella + Aladdin

Last night. Dinner party with the girls. There were six of us. Three of whom I didn't know. I was the youngest. The oldest was 61. All of us single. It didn't take long before we were swapping hilariously awkward tales of infatuation, biological clocks and "platonic" male roommates.

As I finished off the crackers and triple-cream cheese, I dropped a bombshell. I believe in blurting out shocking statements when among strangers.

"Unemployment is not a deal-breaker."

Yep, I said it. And I almost meant it.

One of the women had been ranting about how both artsy men and "church men" seem to lack career ambition. That musicians and Christians rank among the worst husband material as they can't provide stability or security. So according to her, I have disastrous taste in men. At least there's no competition. (I'm still confused by that conversation. Some of the most ambitious men I've ever met happen to fit both categories. But I guess we travel in different circles.)

I'm not scared of poverty. And as I make decisions about my own career and future, I try to prioritize creative fulfillment over security. Passion over fear. Not that I'm being irresponsible with my finances, but I'm not going to approach my life from a "but will I retire comfortably?" perspective. So why would I expect that of someone else? Why would I shift from trusting God to provide to expecting a man to provide? I'm pretty sure God can provide for two. I don't need a superhero. Or a knight. Just a partner in crime.

Maybe it's because once upon a time, in a land not that far away, I had a crush on Aladdin, not Prince Charming.

Disney's Prince Charming was rich, reserved and without personality. He was handsome but rarely spoke. There was no banter, no spark, no charm (ironic, no?). He didn't even pursue Cinderella at midnight; he sent someone else to run after her. He merely turned a lovely girl into a lovely princess. Sure, I wanted to be Cinderella, but I wanted to be the poor version of her: the gal in a brown dress with the ribbon in her hair. I wanted to sing while scrubbing floors. I wanted to wear a dress made by mice. The poufy ballgown? The lifeless waltz with royalty? Um, pass.

And any guy who'd marry someone for her shoe size has issues.

But Aladdin was different. He was passionate about life. He had a pet monkey. He was a complicated mix of trustworthy soul and wanted criminal. He had wits, street smarts, agility, fearlessness. He shared his loot with the even-less-fortunate. (Sure, he struggled with pride and insecurity, that need to prove himself worthy, even though Jasmine was smitten with him regardless of status or title. Sigh.) He didn't need to be a prince; love and the adventure of survival was enough.

I may not be swooning over the guys who sleep all day and play Guitar Hero in their parents' basements all night, but I also don't want to be lumped in with the generation of girls who still count on Prince Charming to heroically rescue them from every financial concern and non-glamorous circumstance. I'd rather tackle life together. Living-room picnics over four-star restaurants any day.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Happy Birthday, Nathan!

Uh, your gift is, um...used up. Take some time to meditate on Bret and Jemaine today.

Thanks for introducing me to The Kooks. They're my addiction as of late.

And to Nathanial.

I know a lot about TV. But if it wasn't for you, I would never have encountered Yo Gabba Gabba. I am forever indebted to you.

Have a great day. Happy 22!

I feel old.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Tonight: Cocktails with Jully Black is where it's at, yo.*

*Have you ever heard me try to say "yo" in a take-me-seriously manner? It doesn't work. It's worse than "dude." I can almost get away with that one. In certain circles. At certain hours.

Back to

It's a social magazine. So come be social. It's also home to a plethora of pretty cool writers. So join, read, and engage with folks like yours truly. And I'll try to keep you updated on my writing life over there.

Oh, and all grapes should be wrapped in brie and then rolled in nuts. Just as all charitable donations should be rewarded with free MAC products.

P.S. I love Jully's dress. To an insane degree. I might have to buy it. And then embrace a social life that justifies just a purchase.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

YouTube Wednesday? Cover Me

I have ideas for approximately 35.8 blog entries swimming in my head. But I'm having a hard time carving out the time needed to eloquently express why Aladdin is better boyfriend material than Prince Charming. In the meantime, let's cheat and listen to other people cheating, shall we?

I love covers. I hate covers. I once shocked an adorable group of 8-year-olds by mentioning that Lenny Kravitz didn't write "American Woman." (I also had to tell a teenager that Cobain was dead. Truth hurts, kids.)

Some covers are cute. See Colbie Callait's "Kiss the Girl."
Some covers make me hate my ears. See Ashley Tisdale's "Kiss the Girl."
Both are completely unnecessary.

Oh, and I won't be posting Whitney's version of "I Will Always Love You." Or Aretha's "Respect." Because they're too obvious. Too awesome.

Better Than the Original: U2 and "Helter Skelter"

Every time I listen to "Rattle and Hum," I regret the year of my birth. Why am I not older, looking back on the tour of a lifetime? WHY WAS I NOT THERE?

"Burning Up": The Veronicas Cover the Jonas Brothers

It must be rough to be a Jonas. Especially the old one. He didn't make People's Most Beautiful People issue. But his brothers did. And now I'm claiming that two chicks could replace them.

Kevin, keep your chin up. Christian Bale wasn't on the list last year. Clearly People staffers have a pretty complicated selection process that doesn't take physical appearance into account. Not enough 14-year-olds scream over you. That's all. You're borderline too-ancient-for-Disney (having survived puberty -- just wait until your cute siblings start sprouting all kinds of awkwardness), and you escaped adolescence without having dated Miley Cyrus. Consider yourself blessed.

Switchfoot are "Crazy in Love"

This is how I like my Beyoncé. Without Beyoncé.

Travis Does Britney

It's a decent pop song, folks. Admit it.

Um.... Paul Anka vs. Nirvana

I'm torn. I love Anka. I really do. And Cobain and I have a complicated relationship, a half-love based in legistlated nostalgia. I'm not sure if this combination is brilliant or contrived by Satan.

Possibly the Worst Cover Ever?

I had no idea AC/DC was so sacred. But this makes me weep for future generations that may not hear the song as God intended.

Celine, step away from the microphone.

Bonus: Shatner does "Rocket Man." You're welcome.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

YouTube Tuesday...Is Coming

I'm thinking, okay? I'll post later, folks. Maybe.

P.S. I wore the Sue Ellen Ewing shirt today. If you don't know who she is, get thee to Wikipedia!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Smell You Later

I went for a run outside today. This was not the plan. Fortunately, the weather was gorgeous and totally suited for a jog around the neighbourhood. If it hadn't been, I would have had to forfeit my 5k training for the sake of my lovely nose.

It was supposed to be an afternoon of intervals on the treadmill. But when Julia and I got to the gym, the cardio machines were full. So we signed up for the next time slot and headed to the mats to stretch and do ab work. And then lifted weights. When it came time to run, he got in the way.

"He" is a man who does not wash his gym clothes. Ever. He was running, in slip-on loafers, on Treadmill 1. I was signed up to run beside him on Treadmill 2. But I couldn't do it. In fact, I had a hard time doing bicep curls a good ten feet behind him because of the stench. And it kept spreading, wafting through the poorly ventilated space. I couldn't get away from the rotten odor of what I consider to be decades of layered perspiration.

I ran beside him once. I wasn't sure if I was going to throw up or pass out, but I was quite certain that I wouldn't survive my 20 minutes. My iPod doesn't have a smell filter.

So today we went outside. Where I could breathe. And made plans for both outdoor training and early-morning runs. And fantasized about doing a stranger's laundry.

He needs a buddy to teach him the ways of the gym. And of life. And I need to carefully map out a treadmill schedule that doesn't overlap with his.

There was a study recently about women and men and perspiration. Apparently, as a woman, I'm capable of discerning between workout sweat and he-likes-me sweat. I'm pretty sure he doesn't like me. I'm also pretty sure that if a guy wants to impress, he dons a clean T-shirt at least once a week. With him, I'd settle for once a month.

Sunday, May 03, 2009


Highlight: Wolverine threw on a plaid shirt, got a job as a lumberjack, and settled down in northern Canada with a school teacher. Complete with aboriginal folk tales as foreplay. 'Cause that's how Canadians roll.

Well, until the thing with the hobbit. And the rage. Violence always ruins the plaid.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Redecorating Daydreams

Disclaimer: I live in the city. But want my place to feel like the country. Or a cottage. I make no apologies for the lack of urban sleekness. Nothing stark and modern, thanks. I want cozy.

Home Office

I'd like to write here. I have the wire basket. And wooden chair. Now I need a cushion. And desk.

I wouldn't mind some sprawling desk space. That's open and airy and inviting. With floor-to-ceiling windows. (Time to ditch the IKEA-dorm-desk situation, Nadine.)


I need more color in my bedroom. I already have the slippers.

Note to self: Decorate with books and fire.

I have a wrought-iron single bed. Painted white. The quilt on my bed is 30 years old. And is disintegrating. Time for something new. That still looks old.

I want cowboy boots. And maybe wallpaper.

My landlords might not want me installing beams.

Now would they want me building a brilliant brick wall. But how I heart chandeliers....

source: decor8 & country living. and probably pottery barn.
and some are complete mysteries, saved on my computer years ago.