Thursday, December 22, 2005

'Tis the Season to be Jolly

If, that is, by jolly you really mean fat.
Because really? 'Tis the season to be fat.

Here's how the Christmas carol should really go:

Deck the halls with bowls of Turtles,
Fat fat fat fat fat, fat fat fat fat.
'Tis the season to be fat.
Fat fat fat fat fat, fat fat fat fat.
Don we now our large apparel,
Fat fat fat, fat fat fat, fat fat fat.
Eat the entire box of Timbits,
Fat fat fat fat fat, fat fat fat fat.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good feast.

I'll see you on the treadmill in 2006. Much love and many calories,


Thursday, December 15, 2005

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Sn… Ah Fuck Off.

It's not every year that we are blessed with a blanket of snow so early in December.

Hey! Maybe if we are really lucky, by the time Christmas rolls around, the whole city will be blanketed in a frothy white layer of crisp white magic. We can all get bundled up and run to the park to make snow angels and build forts.

We can brew up some sweet, milky hot chocolate and nuzzle it against our chests as we lounge by the fire and watch the flakes drift past the frosty picture window.

It'll be another Christmas miracle!

(I just threw up a little bit in my mouth and swallowed it again. How soon before I can permanently retire to Florida?)

Monday, December 12, 2005

We Were Never Being Boring

Ahem. My weekend in a nutshell:

Saturday Night: 8:30 pm: Beaches arrives at Bendy Girl's Annual Christmas Bird Party, bird in hand and ready to give'r.

Saturday Night: 9:04 pm: Beaches is on her second Pomegranate Martini, third bacon-wrapped date and cheese thingy, 30th Cadbury Christmas egg and fifth Benson & Hedges Special Mild

Saturday Night: 9:17 pm: Beaches officially drunk.

Saturday Night: 10:10 pm: Have by now laughed so much that face is sore and the need to pee is constant and annoying.

Saturday Night: 10:12 pm: Beaches and Guru compare ugly red splotches that have spread over faces/shoulders/thighs. A result of delicious Pomegranate Martinis. Neither of us care enough about obvious severe allergic reaction to actually stop drinking.

Sunday Morning: 1:57 am: Beaches informed that it is close to 2 am. Holy fack, what happened to the last four hours, where did the other eight girls go and how did one of us end up in her PJs?

Sunday Morning: 2:03 am: Beaches decides that she really must get home, but definitely will need to polish off the tall glass of Red Bull and have another couple ciggies first.

Sunday Morning: 3:54 am: Beaches makes it home and into bed. Is now lying wide awake, staring at ceiling and cursing Red Bull/Pomegranate Martini soup currently sloshing around in her belly.

Sunday Morning: 7:02 am: Beaches has just settled into comfortable, drunken slumber when DOG decides it's time to wake up for breakfast. Beaches walks into two door frames and stubs toe on stairs in attempt to feed and shut up dog asap.

Sunday Morning: 11:45 am: Beaches wakes up in panic, realizes that she needs to clean house before Moms and Scarbie arrive to go with her to the *gasp" Umbra Sale. Note: Worst place on earth to go with a hangover.

Sunday Afternoon: 4:45 pm: Beaches is in hell (aka Umbra sale) with two million other cheapskates who refuse to pay full price for things they don't need. Like four new toothbrush holders and a gazillion picture frames, even though already have a gazillion picture frames from last year's Umbra sale still in the boxes and taking precious closet space. Do not have enough wall space in tiny downtown condo for all these bloody fucking picture frames. Does anyone need a metallic blue push pin board? Because Beaches decided it would be smart to buy four of them. What?! Everything was two for one and Scarbie and I were on a shopping HIGH. Just changed mind, Umbra sale is actually heaven.

Now. Back to the Bird Party. It's an annual all-girls party, held by the incomparable host, Bendy Girl, each year at Christmas time. Girls only, and each Bird needs to bring a bird for the perfect, Martha-Stewart-didn't-even-think-this-up, all-bird decorated Christmas tree. We are all approaching 30, already 30 or in our 30's, and at some point, after the wilder half of us left to attend a second venue, we had a brief discussion about whether or not we were getting boring. It came up because those of us who stayed behind half-heartedly discussed going out to a bar but then nobody actually moved and it was quite obvious that we were much happier to stay planted on our asses eating chocolates, drinking Red Bull and Pomegranate Martinis and talking shit. Is that boring?

I think not and I've got the conversational quotes to prove it. All quotes were spoken out loud (none by me, just so you know) and recorded in my Pig Bhong cup and saucer shaped notepad, a gift to each of us from Guru. Suffice it to say that this note pad has the headline, "Wsenever you deeply troubed" (sic) on the front along with a picture of a cartoon pig wearing a hoodie, no pants and bleeding from the nose. It's the awesomest note pad ever and the fact that Guru found and purchased them for each of us definitely proves that she is SO NOT boring and also an excellent shopper.

Five Actual Quotes from the Bird Party: (Warning, this will likely not be funny to anyone that was not at said Bird Party - feel free to skip to witty "Lessons Learned" ending)

1. "If it don't fit, wiggle it a bit."
2. "My vagina just smoked a joint."
3. "Feeding the Horse." (This is an apparent sexual activity. I never really got what it means, but it has something to do with whiskers and a flat palm.)
4. "I don't care if you smack my ass, or pull my hair. Just do SOMETHING."
5. "I had my fingers up to here in marinara sauce!"

Now does that sound like a group of women who are boring? Does it? Does it? Okay. Maybe we're a tiny bit boring. But funny-boring! Definitely funny-boring.

Valuable Lessons Learned:

1. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbours immaculate, perfectly decorated, disgustingly amazing apartment that appears to be something that lept effortlessly from the pages of Canadian House & Home magazine and has been decorated to such a state in just over ONE month, even if thy own apartment has been in thyne possession for well over four months and still has a looooong way to go. (Bendy, I NEED the paint colour used in your living/dining room STAT.)

2. Thou shall learn to write shorter sentences.

3. Thou shalt not ever, ever buy another picture frame from the Umbra sale. Not if they are 2 for 1, or 20 for 1. No more frames, damn it. No more frames.

4. Thou shalt not refer to oneself in the first person ever again.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Walk the Line

So, it took me a while to come around.

Maybe it's because at the impressionable age of 11, I pledged an allegiance of eternal love to his (now tragically deceased) brother, or maybe I just shallowly couldn't get past the hair lip, but I have finally arrived at a firm decision.

Joaquin Phoenix is HOT.

Saw Walk the Line last night with Weirdo. Loved it. And not just because of aforementioned hotness, either. I really enjoyed watching the story of Johnny Cash's life, I thought the performances of both His Hotness Joaquin and Reese Witherspoon were fantastic, I was even blown away by their singing.

Seriously. They looked and sounded incredible together. I'm surprised she didn't dump Whatshisface Phillipe then and there and run away to the Grand Ole Opry to sing and live in harmony forever and ever with Leafy, for real.

There was another reason why I loved this movie so much, not quite as frivolous as the hotness of Mr. Phoenix, but an important one, I suppose. I have a rather tumultuous relationship with Johnny Cash and this style of music (if you can in fact catagorise it as a single style, which many would argue you really can't).

My father is a huge Johnny Cash fan. He loves (loved? I really don't know anymore)classic country, honky tonk and rhythm & blues. He used to play his guitar for my sister and I, and we'd sing along together to hits by Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Kenny Rogers, Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, and on and on. These are moments that I remember very fondly, but which also make me nauseous and dizzy with what my sister and I might have missed out on all these years without our dad. The thought that he actually knew something about something, and had this passion for music that we could have shared, well, it's all a bit too much at times.

As a kid, I wanted to think that my dad was a huge dork for liking that music, but secretly I loved it so much. The way the harmonies fit together, they way that we could belt it out because the pace was just right and the lyrics were simple and strong. Today, it just takes one bar of one song to set my stomach in knots and bring tears to my eyes; "Walk the Line," "Islands in the Stream," "The Gambler," and "To All the Girls I've Loved Before" are definitely on the stomach-churning list.

"Give My Love to Rose" is another one of these songs. Rose was my dad's nickname for my mom. She hated it with a fierce passion, and to this day will cringe at the reminder of that name. But I remember Dad singing this song with his guitar and his honky tonk voice, and to me I guess it represented how much he loved her. Even if that wasn't true, that's what I chose to believe and so that song is more that just a song. There are probably similar affiliations for all of these songs that tear at my heart, but I'm not sure I want to go there, and I'm damn sure none of you want me to. Eat that Dr. Freud.

I'm glad that they made this movie, and that it turned out to be really good. I think sitting in a dark theater, hearing all the songs together at one time, and focusing on the film, instead of on the memories that my mind wants to associate the songs with, might have been therapeutic. At the risk of jumping on the bandwagon, I think it's time to pick up a copy of Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison and get re-acquainted with this true and soulful legend of rock & roll.

Did I mention that Joaquin Phoenix is totally HOT? Trust me, see the flick.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Clowns to the Left of Me

There is just nothing better than really sharp satire and since I'm not creative enough these days to write my own, I'm turning to The Onion instead.

This is just too funny not to pass along.

I mean seriously, "funyunmentalist"? "Chiplomats"? It's pure genius.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Personal Jesus

I take it back. I take it ALL back.

I've been waiting patiently to sign back on and let you know that my original post about my beloved Depeche Mode and their newest album was all wrong. After a few more listens, as predicted, it grew on me and now when I hear it I smile. I was hasty, and a bit preoccupied I suppose, when I gave Playing the Angel it's first listen. By the fourth or fifth run through, I was singing along and feeling the love. It's not their best album, by any means, but it's a good solid record with some great tracks and just enough of the classic Dave Gahan gloomy good-stuff and willowy Martin Gore melodrama.

But I still wanted to wait and reserve final judgement until after I'd seen the live show. I waited for the night with anticipation and a little anxiety, a little voice in my head telling me not to expect too much. They are old, after all. It has been 25 years of magic and no band can be expected to truly rock for that long. I paced and pouted at the thought that the reserved and conservative "Toronto chin-scratchers" would ruin the show with their silence and their sitting down.

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong again.

Now, I'm not a music reviewer, so I'll leave the professional review up to a profesional. I think Ben Rayner has done a great job with his review so give it a read if you're interested.

If you want my side of the story, here it is.

Let's just say that the entire evening not only renewed my faith, it actually allowed me to reach out and touch it. This was easily the second best concert that I've ever seen, and THE absolute best that I've seen in Toronto. Let me just explain that he first-best concert was when I saw Madonna's Drowned World tour in 2001 at the Palace of Auburn Hills in Detroit. Hands down, best show ever, and the day that I see a show that can top it, will be the day that I can die happy. But I digress. It's not fair to compare, really.

Okay, last night.

I attended the show with my favourite guys: Crown, Mr. Rush and my own Personal Gsus (aka GParty). Any night is a good night when it's me and the guys, but there really are no guys better to see a show with than these ones. They have fun and they are not afraid to show themselves having it. It's why I've loved each of them since the moment I met them. Last night was no exception.

We screamed, we danced, we sweat. Gsus faked passing out and gave me a big belly laugh. Crown had on his dancing shoes and busted his phenomenal whistle (of which, by the way, I am insanely jealous). Mr. Rush bopped and bounced. I sang EVERY WORD TO EVERY SONG at the top of my lungs. The special part? So did everyone else. Hallelujah and praise the Lord. Toronto HAD FUN.

There was a moment, during "Personal Jesus", when the sold-out crowd at the ACC was reaching out to touch faith in synchronization and I swear I had a religious experience. If you know me, you know, I'm not religious. But there is nothing like being in a crowd of 20,000 people, all on their feet, all singing out loud to a song that you love and waving their hands in unison. It blows your mind. It blew mine.
Had God actually floated down from the rafters and landed on the stage, nobody would have even noticed him (her?) because ALL EYES were on Dave.

Dave. He is God. Remember when he died and came back to life? Yeah. Now I know. He actually did die, God took his body (who wouldn't? It's HOT) and came down to spend eternity singing "Personal Jesus", shirtless, to sold out crowds. That's right, his shirt was off in the first 15 minutes, and all was right with the world.

I cried. Not a shock, I'm sure. But seriously, when Martin Gore walked out alone on the stage for the encore, flooded in red light, and the first pulsing strains of "Somebody" filled the stadium, I may have had an orgasm. That song? It's all ravaged teenage emotions, unrequited passion, first loves, first dance, first broken heart, "first time," all rolled into one. You may wrongly think that I was having a "chick" moment, but nope. I think the guys felt it too. In fact, I'm pretty sure the entire stadium shared my ecstasy.

TWO encores. TWO ENCORES! The second one whipped the crowd into such a frenzy that I thought the roof was going to blow off the building. The roar was actually deafening and I noticed a few people around me screaming out loud and plugging their ears at the same time. I would never have guessed that they would actually come back out a second time, but Crown was defiant. "We're not leaving until they they sing that song I love. There is no way I'm leaving until that happens."

The song, he loves? "Never Let Me Down Again." Guess what? They didn't.

Picture it again. 20,000 people singing together and waving their arms in happy, sweaty unison. "See the stars they're shining bright, everything's alright tonight." Indeed it was.