Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Twenty Eleven

2010 was magical, there is no doubt about that. The Olympics, Paris, Switzerland, Hawaii, Vegas, weddings, it was all decently documented here, so I’ll try to not bore everyone with the details again.

But this year is about to come to a close. With two short days left in the year it is time to look ahead. Looking ahead though, frightens the shit out of me.

Almost 30, still single, and feeling a wee unsatisfied, I don’t know what I want from 2011.
And yes, I know I said I was ok with 30, but I may have been a big fat liar. There is so much shit that I want to do with my life, and I feel like I’m running out of time. I mean eventually, I want to settle down, find a boy to spend my life with, but I don't want to rush anything, and well need to hurry the fuck up. Time's running out!

That being said, I think from 2011, I want adventure. I want to feel like I took some chances on me, and maybe one or two will work, but if not, I want to look back on the year ahead thinking I grabbed it by the balls and made 2011 my bitch.

Also, I would like a new liver. This one won’t cut it for much longer.

Monday, December 20, 2010

And I never was smart with love

I let the bad ones in and the good ones go
But I'm gonna love you like I've never been hurt before
I'm gonna love you like I'm indestructible
Your love is ultra magnetic and
it's taking over
This is hardcore
And I'm indestructible

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

60 to 30

In exactly 60 days I will be 30.

And I'm not really freaked out by it. In fact, and I know this sounds silly, but I'm kinda done with my 20's. I feel with each passing year I have grown in ways I didn't know were possible - professionally, personally, width.

But over the next 60 days I am going to enjoy the last hints of youth. I've been delaying the inevitable for a while, but 30 is definitely beyond the point of being considered youthful - just ask Barney Stinson.

I'm not going to do a things to do list, because, well, 60 days ain't that much, and I can honestly say, I've done a pretty good job of doing the stuff I really want. My 20's have been filled with adventure, some (though not a lot of) romance, amazing family and friends. And despite most of my worst moments happening in the past decade, this decade has made me, well, me.

So for my 30th birthday, I'm breaking with tradition and spending time with my parents. We are taking off for two weeks for a wee trip to Italy. It should be interesting - no friends, no connections, just me, ma & pa. We haven't done this in a while.

And maybe I will return with something fabulous from Prada, Gucci or Valentino.

I doubt it though.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Where do I go from here?

I have been trying to write this post for three weeks with limited success.

A few weeks ago, two of my closest friends came to visit for a girl's weekend on the coast. I was super excited, and even cleaned my apartment for the visit.

These two people have been with me for almost 10 years now. Our friendship is real, there is no doubt about that. Our friendship is deep, there is also no doubt about that.

But the thing about relationships with depth is that they have the power to hurt more than others.

It sucks.

During this trip, and after a lovely dinner, my two friends confronted me on something they had both discussed prior to arriving in Vancouver - my lack of emotions.

In their words, I am an emotional robot.

Now this is not the first time my inability to emote on command has put strain on my relationships. P3 made several comments about my emotional quotient.

Here's the thing, I'm not unemotional. My friends' comments made me quite angry, which proves I am, in fact, not a robot. I am a fixer. I see a problem, hear you crying or upset, I'm going to try my damnedest to resolve the problem as quickly as possible. I also don't believe in burdening people with my woes. My life can be quite heavy at times, too heavy for me, so why should I unload on other people. There's just no need for it.

We were able to resolve(ish)the fight that ensued. They left on good terms and life was to continue on as normal, but their words have left a deeper impression than expected.

Here I am, three weeks later, still obsessing about it. And not only am I still hurt by their words, but I wonder what kind of truth lies in them. Am I too cold for people? Are my walls finally proving too high for even my closest friends? And if they are too high for my friends, how will a man ever overcome them?

I've done the obligatory survey - asking every stakeholder I can think of it they are correct. The response has mainly been that I am in fact, not an emotional robot. Which is nice to hear, but I don't necessarily believe them.

So where does all this rambling leave me? I don't want to fight with my friends, but at the same time, I'm still hurt by their words. I'm still hurt by the fact that they both had the same issues, but neither had the balls to talk to me about it. I'm still hurt that two people I care deeply about questioned my dedication and attachment to our relationships.

Basically, I'm pretty fucking hurt and I don't really know where to go from here.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Baby boy I'm staying here

Distance makes the heart grow weak
So that the mouth can barely speak
Except to those who hide their needs
And I have read the golden seal
That tell of how the seedlings feel
Reminds my heart what love can yield


Monday, October 25, 2010

Tip of the week

I really love Bon Iver. My old cubie let me rip For Emma, Forever Ago a couple of years ago and I've been hooked since.

Skinny Love was one of three break-up songs when P3 and I were done. It breaks my heart every time I hear 'skinny love just last a year' - god do you want those non-forever relationships to just make it a little longer.

The music is mellow, there's no denying it, but it is so good. In fact, they're so good, I've listened to the albums (at work) a total of 145 times.

Blood Bank is a short four songs, but each will make you ache and wish they had included just one more.

So there's my tip of the week. Bon Iver. Go, enjoy. You can thank me later. I've already thanked Adam, many times.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Oh won't you come on over

And I think of all the things,
What you're doing,
And in my head I paint a picture.

Well since I come home,
Well my body's been a mess,
And I miss your tender hair,
And the way you like to dress.

Monday, October 18, 2010

You're my motorcycle mama

Think of me as a helping hand, nothing more nothing less than that
We could sing all your hardships away
You deserve the best, you should expect nothing less
We could live in bliss, if you just say yes
On a night like this, life can change with a kiss

Thursday, October 07, 2010

What I want

I'm getting a little sad.

Several months ago I returned from Europe with a spring in my step and hope in my pocket.

I sit here today with very little of either. I have lost the hope and I have lost the spring. And it makes me so sad.

The reason for the hope is starting to distance himself - as he should. It has been more than a year since we originally met. More than a year of being 8333km away from one another. More than a year of thinking about him and wishing with every little piece of me that this boy I met lived just a few time zones closer to me.

But alas he doesn't.

When I came back from Switzerland I thought there was a chance of him coming to visit before next year. I thought I had left enough of an impression on him that he would take a risk and fly across the world. Of course he didn't - how silly was I to even think that?

Pretty silly.

The earliest he may come here is March 2011. That would make it a year since I was in Switzerland. It's already been months without a decent date. And for all I know he is dating many women, or heck, maybe the reason for the distancing is that he found an actual girlfriend. Like I'd mentioned before, he's too cute to stay single for much longer.

I'm too scared to ask though. Too scared that he has had enough sense to move on, when I have not. Too scared to find out that I'm not worth waiting for, when I believed (and still do) that he is worth waiting for.


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Start to flirt with satisfied

She says if you’re not here, at least make sure you miss me.
So when I miss her I make sure to let her know.
It’s the least that I could do and sure I guess I like it too,
I’m Mr. Charming without the charming.

How can you not love Dan?

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Whip it good

My ass got whipped last week.

You see, in recent months my work has gone through a series of fairly significant changes: new ownership, new offices, the departure of some of my favorite people.

All had been good. I was doing ok. Really.

Then last week happened. Last week I didn't do ok.

Last week, in fact, I felt like I sucked balls. You see I was to deliver my first reputation audit. I have helped out with them in the past, but had yet to lead one. I was both excited and nervous.

And I totally underestimated all the things I didn't know. Well, that may not be true. I think I underestimated the things that weren't intuitive to me.

Since the start of my career in public relations, most things have come somewhat intuitively, which is how I knew I found my niche. But last week, nothing I did was right. I didn't ask for help when I should have, I didn't send the report to edits early enough, I didn't look at the data from the right angle.

Obviously I didn't do a lot of things right.

I was doubting everything. As per usual. But as Sarin said, "This is your first time writing a report like this. You will learn and do better next time."

Things I have learned because of this debacle:

  1. While I am good at my job, I am not perfect. I must remember to ask for help. Even when I don't want to.
  2. There are some things that are beyond my expertise, right now. 
  3. Bring in extra eyes, they can save so much stress.
  4. Look at the data from all angles. Don't assume anything. 
  5. Carefully review previous examples of similar work. I put the emphasis on CAREFULLY. Sometimes, because of the environment I work in, I skip the carefully and run through everything. No matter how much other shit I have on my plate, I have to start dedicating time to preparing for the new projects that will come up. Well, new to me. 
  6. Regan Lal is an amazing resource and I miss her dearly. She is my co-worker who had a baby and abandoned me. I miss her all the time for many things other than her big brain, but last week I missed her guidance, patience and ability to walk me through things that I need to know. 
Now you know why I turned everything off. 

Friday, September 03, 2010

I'm camping this weekend

The goal is to turn everything off - no BBM, no Facebook, no Twitter, no nothing.

Well, there will still be texting and calling, but going without those would be ludacris!

Tonight, Jarod, Steve & I are hitting Elk Island Park for a little overnight trip. Me, two gays and a big dog in one tent. I'm so excited.

Jarod and I get to set up the site soon.

I'm pretty sure it will go something like this:

I'll talk to you all in a few days.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

For once unafraid, I can go where life leads me

For once in my life, I won't let sorrow hurt me
Not like it's hurt me before
For once, I have something I know won't desert me
I'm not alone anymore

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Funny as hell

Seriously - does shit get funnier than this? I've watched this clip at least 20 times and still laugh out loud with each viewing.

It's HIGH-larious!

Friday, August 20, 2010


I've been on the Skype bandwagon for a few years now - it had been a life-saver when trying to keep in touch while I was in NYC, but for all the money it saved me then, I still had yet to fully appreciate the magic of the technology. 

Until this week.

This week, my Swiss friend and I had our first video chat via Skype, and it was magical.

I hadn't seen his face since I was on the train leaving Bern, and well that wasn't the happiest of days. It had also felt like I had started making up how cute he is. Like my memory had made him up and he was merely just a normal dude I had manifested, or something. But let me tell ya, I didn't make it up. He really is as cute as I remembered. And not to mention as silly as can be. I'm smiling from ear-to-ear just writing this.

So back to the call. I had no idea I could be so excited to see someone's face. We have had many telephone calls, but this video call takes the cake. To see him, sitting there, looking right at me. Fuck. It was awesome.

It really was. But at the same time, this Skype call proved harder than I expected.


Well, I don't like boys often. I go on dates, but most boys fail to impress or leave any impression at all. But this boy, well this boy has left an impression. A pretty deep impression in fact. So to see his face, and hear his voice. To know that he was as excited (I think) to see me, but to not be able to reach out and touch him, well that was harder than I expected. Much harder. It took everything (and a maxed out credit card) to stop me from buying a one-way ticket to Switzerland and not look back.

But as he has said before: "This is life. You are there and I am here. What can we do?"

Suck balls man.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Twas a good day

I love my job. You are all aware of that. But there are things about my job that scare the shit out of me.

Media relations is one of them.

You see, early on in my career, I had some ... failures in the media relations department. First there was the New York Times reporter that yelled and cursed at me.

Then there was a whole situation with a not-for-profit I was working with a couple of years ago and not being able to get them any media coverage - despite them being totally worthwhile.

So, since then I have removed myself from any media relations activities and focused on things I am much better at, social media being one of them.

Well today was a super duper great day.

Yesterday I pitched a story to some traditional and online publications. None of the traditionals wanted it, but a couple of the online pubs ran the story.

I got an email from the client today that REUTERS - yes, you read that right, Reuters - picked up the story from one of the online publications.

There are some days you feel like you're not the worst. Today is one of those days. This definitely helps push all of the doubt aside.

I've been found out

I don't have to leave anymore
What I have is right here
Spend my nights and days before
Searching the world for what's right here.

Underneath and unexplored
Islands and cities I have looked
Here I saw
Something I couldn't overlook

Have I mentioned how I'm in love with the idea of being found? Because I am.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Head full of doubt

I mentioned that I made a mistake at work a couple of weeks ago. It was a silly mistake, and I am still not over it.

This mistake has left me ... doubtful.

Maybe I'm not cut-out for the business world. Maybe I am not as awesome as I like to believe. Maybe all the faith my company has in me is totally misplaced.

I can't help but think that the other shoe is going to drop. That I will be exposed as a fraud and that everyone around me is going to end up disappointed in me. That everyone will see my confident bravado is just that, bravado.

I know it's totally obsessive of me, but I can't help it. I am still unable to shake the doubt and it's definitely getting to me.

Just thought I would share.

Monday, August 02, 2010

I wanna believe in everything you believe

I was less than amazing
Do not know what all the troubles are for
Fall asleep in your branches
You're the only thing I want anymore

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Today I knew, I made the right decision

Obviously I didn't really talk about the happenings of the past month or so. They have been a little complex, so I needed to get my head straight before I could articulate what's up.

After today, I think I'm ready, so let me try.

A few weeks ago I had a job offer in Toronto.

Yes, I said Toronto. I wasn't necessarily looking to leave my current job, I've talked about how much I love it after all. But I do like the idea of getting some interview experience and keeping your resume fresh. So whatever, I randomly applied for a job in Toronto that I wasn't qualified for.

But I was given an offer anyways. Apparently, I'm marketable.

This job offer was lovely. The firm seemed great, the people super nice and the work interesting. It would have been a lateral move - no doubt - but it wouldn't have been a bad move. In fact, I think some people believe it would have been a really good move.

I digress.

I received this offer, thought about it, talked to my bosses about it - after all, for the past three years, they have been my most tangible mentors - but then chose to decline it.

In seeking advice from all fronts, my friend Josh said "Whatever decision you make, it will be the right one."

I thought it was nice advice, but didn't fully believe it until today.

You see today, I found out a stupid, uncharacteristic mistake I made almost got us fired. A client was so upset with my work, that it almost resulted in us losing the account.

I wanted to die.

While I like to pretend that I have a pretty pulled-together life, in reality, the only pulled-together thing I have is work. It's the only place I am confident, capable and moving in the right direction.

My personal life is a mess.

Again, I digress.

I haven always prided myself on being good at my job. I have never been fired from anything and the idea that something I did put my agency in a precarious position really got to me.

I spoke to my boss about it in general terms, as this information was given to me in confidence. As she reassured me that the loss of a client will not result in the loss of my job and that this company believes in me, I knew:

I definitely made the right decision.

So, for the first time, I chose Vancouver. I chose it over the bright lights, big city of Toronto, which, in turn, means I may have chosen it over New York.

Who knew that would ever happen?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Here we are again

I originally wrote this post two years ago, but here we are again, like we will be every July 25th. This year make 13 years since my cousin died. And still I sit here, welling up at the idea that another year has passed. That my cute little half-breed nieces & nephews will never know the best part of our family - that they will forever have to hear stories of this man they know only from a photo.

Stupid life.

There are some moments in your life you will never forget. Your first kiss, your first job interview, winning your first award, being published for the first time, you get the drift.

There are other moments though you remember for all the wrong reasons. They catch you off-guard and throw your life into a tailspin. A moment that you will forever be able to revisit by just closing your eyes, the steps you took, the feelings you had, the reaction you gave and then everything else just blurs.

My favorite cousin died 11 13 years ago. All because of a motorcycle accident, this man was taken away from his friends and family far too soon. Far too soon.

He was funny and smart and kind and had this ability to make you feel so special, even if you weren’t. He was adventurous and outgoing and playful and I doubt you will find anyone out there to say a bad word about him. He was someone you could look up to and admire, without ever feeling lame for actually admiring someone.

And after going down a few steps and sitting down with my dad, he was taken away from me. Forever. Well, he had been taken away from me a couple of days earlier, I just didn’t know about it. Sometimes, ignorance really is bliss. And while I can vividly remember the moment leading up to my dad talking to me and the talk my dad had with me and a few moments immediately after, the rest it is all a blur, with random memories here and there; things that gave me some sort of comfort and other things that proved to be no solace at all.

I think about him all the time, obviously, more so today. The upsetting thing is, I cannot remember his voice. I remember what he looks like and moments we spent together, but I was only 16 and didn’t know that I needed to remember what his voice sounded like. You never realize that you NEED to remember these things, that moments you never thought would matter, really do when you can’t have them anymore.

You never realize that the people you love won’t always be around. That one day, you will be calling their family to say, I am thinking about them today. But in reality, you think about them all the time. At the top of a climb and the beautiful view, I think, fuck Hugh would have loved this.

So, yeah, today sucks. I has since 1997 and it will every year until the day I die. All because of one fucking moment, one little fucking second, so many years ago.

Worst day ever.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


I am starting to get frustrated.

Single for three years, dating the entire time, I have yet to meet a boy I really enjoy in Vancouver.

No, because I like the difficult life, in the past three years, the only boy that I have met that I like enough to think about dating lives 8333km away. (yes, that is the exact distance from Vancouver to Bern)

So now, not only does he live very far away, but because I think he's pretty great, I'm getting frustrated. Frustrated with the fact that we cannot really get to know each other from so far away. Frustrated that this great life I have here cannot be shared with him. Frustrated that because I was lucky enough to find him, I am now uninterested in the idiots boys here.

It was four really special days in Bern and how I would love for it to translate into something more. At the very least a second or third date. But I am starting to feel the hope he provided slipping away. He is too cute to remain single for much longer.

And my biggest fear may just come true: I will be forgotten.

I hate the idea of being forgotten. Especially by this boy.


Friday, July 16, 2010

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Love is the coal that makes this train roll

Let me be your everlasting light

I'll hold and never scold

In me you can confide

When no ones by your side

Let me be your everlasting light

Monday, July 05, 2010

I can't believe

The first six months of 2010 are now a memory - and what a glorious memory they are.

2010 started with a rad Justin Timberlake, Euro-chic birthday surprise; then the Games; followed by Paris and the most swoon-worthy Swiss boy; Hawaii with the family; and Vegas for a friend's stagette.

Like Whoa.

It feels like yesterday that Vancouver, its residents and the world were getting ready for the Olympics. Here we are, three months later and I'm still feeling the Olympic hangover. Why? The Olympics showed me the potential of this city and its people. It showed me that the Vancouver I see every day is one millionth of how awesome it could be.

I skipped the immediate Olympic hangover by fleeing to Europe. I left for a couple of reasons - partly for a vacation and partly to see about a boy. And what a vacation (and boy) it was. You've read the details, so I won't bore you. Again.

A month after Paris was Hawaii with the cutest kidlettes ever. I confess, they make kids look like a more appealing option than before.

After Hawaii was Vegas. As it wasn't my trip, what happens in Vegas will stay in Vegas, this time. You can read Sarin's thoughts on the trip if you'd like.

But now I am bored. I'm not sure how the next six months will shape up, but they better step it up. And soon.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

54 days later

I haven't written anything in two months. I don't know why, but I haven't. My life has been busy, but it has also felt somewhat ... uneventful since the amazing trip to Europe.

Um, can we talk about how I still can't believe those ten perfect days were mine? That those aren't fake memories, but real ones? That the boy wasn't a figment of my imagination? Whoa.

I digress.

So what have I done in the past two months? Well ...

I've celebrated a great birthday with my boyfriend, been to Vegas for a stagette, moved offices, lost a beloved co-worker to a baby, saw some music, and continued my attempts to win over the Swiss boy.

So that's been my two months. It doesn't seem like a lot, but trust me it's been awesome.

There's the update. Hopefully I don't get lazy again, because let's not lie, that's what this lack of posts can be chalked up to.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Priority: High

I went to Hawaii this weekend. Yes, it is extravagant for a weekend trip, but the flight prices were cheap, and because it was a family vaycay, I didn't have to pay for anything else.

This weekend has been all kinds of ups and downs.

Up because I got to see all of my immediate family and a good chunk of my extended family.

Up because my nieces and nephews (two of each) are the most awesome kidlettes ever. The kidlettes and I were Team Awesome all weekend. My 1 year old niece was trying to scream my name for the last two days. My 4 year old nephew said I was his girlfriend and tried to stay up all night so he wouldn't miss a minute with me. My 6 year old niece wore her Canada sweater with pride and was fucking awesome-sauce.

Down because it was so short.

Down because Monday was spent in front of a computer working. As these nieces and nephews of mine were on the beach, yelling for me I was forced to deal with a 'client issue'.

Normally, I don't mind working from home, but this was not home. This was a house on Oahu's North Shore. This was time that I was supposed to have with my family that I don't get to hang with much.

This was MY time.

My family understands the reality of mortality and this weekend made me realize: at any point, any one of these people might not be here. And should they stop being here I would be left with nothing but regrets for not spending Monday frolicking on the beach with the cutest half-breed kids in the world.

So, this weekend left me with one nagging question: where the fuck are my priorities?

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Dood's Weekend Eve

Tomorrow, my best dood, Smelly, comes for our annual Dood's Weekend.

I know I've talked about Smelly before, but I don't think I've ever told you about him.

  • His name isn't really Smelly.
  • We met in 1996. Yes, you read that right. 1996. It's mind blowing right? Soon, we will have known each other for more than half of our lives. What?!
  • He was actually my grad date, although we went out separate ways after the dance - in fact, I don't think we even danced together. 
  • We have never shared anything more than platonic exchanges. Although he gave me a gas pedal two weeks before grad, and that wasn't very friendly. Jerk. 
  • When I came home from New York, he drove my car to Calgary to fetch me and drive home with me. 
  • After high school, we almost stopped being friends because his girlfriend didn't like me. 
  • I've asked him to leave before. 
  • He got me a boyfriend once. The guy wasn't a good boyfriend, but Smelly made that one happen. 
  • He is a total guy, without being a total guy about it. I mean, he loves all things boys should like - hockey, camping, etc - but he isn't a macho douche. 
  • He once told me I looked like a lesbian. 
  • He is possibly the best dood anyone could ask for. 
That last one isn't even an exaggeration - Smelly has stuck by me for 14 years. It hasn't mattered what I say to him or tell him, he says his piece and then moves on. He's pretty awesome like that. 

Smelly (left) and I at my 25th birthday. 

We are doing our 3rd Annual Dood's Weekend in style. Thur - Sun will be spent over a table and Catan, I'm sure, Monday we are going to Miike Snow and Tuesday we are going to The xx (yes, I'm giving them one last chance). 

It's going to be all kinds of awesome. 

Friday, April 02, 2010

Chag Kashruth Pesach

This past week marked a little milestone for me - my first real-life Passover experience, with God's Chosen People and all!

You see, my girlfriend invited me to celebrate Passover with her and her family. I was the only Gentile in attendance. It was a full evening's worth of food, prayer, singing and wine.

And let me tell you, Sarin's mom can cook! I got matza ball soup, tapas and spreads of every variety, so many main course options it was like a restaurant and some serious dessert yumminess.

Also, I totally got to see Sarin get her Jew on - she was singing, and praying and everything! She refused to put on her traditional Passover clothes, which was a little mean of her, but whatever.

I felt like I was meeting my boyfriend's parents for the first time - I was nervous and excited and well, I'm really grateful to these people for having Sarin -  and I wanted to make a good impression.

Anyways, just a little shout-out to Sarin and her familia - thanks for the Passover goodness. It was totally the best Passover meal I've ever had.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Vacation Highlight: Switzerland

When I planned on going to Switzerland to see about a boy, I had no idea it would be the perfect ending to an already perfect trip.

Paris was loud. There was a constant buzz to the city, just like there should be. But Parisians are different than any other city-dweller I have encountered. I am not sure why, but the city didn't capture me the way New York did. I mean, NYC was love at first sight, where Paris was lovely, but did not inspire me to pack up and move there.

The train to Bern was stressful to say the least. My nerves were wracked and all day, all I could concentrate on was seeing the Swiss boy I met months ago. Not to mention my luggage had become very large and heavy. oye.

When I got to Bern, the first thing I noticed, other than the boy of course, was the smell - so fresh and so clean - and holy shit was it quiet. That was to be expected, traveling from a city of millions to a city of 200,000 but it still  acted as such a pleasant surprise.

My Swiss friend was an incredible host. Taking me for great food, showing me the sights, introducing me to his friends, drinks all day long, smoking at will, a day trip to Interlaken and not once did he annoy me - a miracle in and of itself.

He was all kinds of great and he didn't make me feel like too much of a burden at any point. Laughing at me wearing ridiculous outfits, recognizing that not only am I loud, but very silly - he was a great punctuation to my trip.

His awesomeness made leaving incredibly difficult though. I haven't been that sad to leave a boy in a very long time, but I did and allowed all of the TGV to read the sadness on my face - it was hard to hide between the tears and all.

For all of my cynicism, my Swiss friend provided me with something I thought I had lost - hope. Hope for something great, something special and more importantly, hope for someone special.

So thanks for the hope Switzerland - it is much appreciated and desperately needed.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Vacation Highlight: Train Travel

The first time I experienced train travel was on my way to Versailles. I don't really count it though because it was a short trip, and I was still in a foreign-land daze.

The next time I took a train was from Paris to Bern, Switzerland. It was a 4.5 hour ride from one country to another - can you imagine?! It would take longer to get from Vancouver to Edmonton.

When I was in Bern, we went on a day-trip to Interlaken, again via train.

This time it was awesome. We stood and had a sandwich and a beer for lunch, followed by a smoke - at the train station. Yes, you read that right, I was able to smoke, inside the train station. yesssss!

We couldn't finish our beer before our train, so we took the can onto the train.

Sidenote: This was very common - people walking around drinking alcoholic beverages. Usually just beer, but even in Paris, people were casually strolling and drinking and smoking and it was the best thing ever.

The train-ride to Interlaken was beautiful. Lakes snuggled into the foothills of the Swiss Alps, the snowcapped  mountains, well it was splendid.

Check it out:

Of course, not all train travel is happy travel - the ride from Bern to Paris was depressing as shit. And it was late, but the cops all of a sudden were on board, so I think we may have been smuggling a criminal or something.

Also, is it weird that I didn't have to fill out any paperwork going into France or Switzerland, and they didn't even look at my passport going or leaving Switzerland?! Does anyone else find that strange?

Anyways, trains are awesome and I wish we had more access to them here. That would be great.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Vacation Highlight: New Shoes

Before I left for Paris, I knew I wanted to buy one thing: a pair of Christian Louboutin shoes.

Can you imagine?! Louboutins from Paris! l'eek!

Well, thanks to a ridiculously busy January and February at work, I was able to afford a pair. These would officially be the most expensive pair of shoes in my closet. I wasn't going to take this decision lightly.

My first day of wandering, I stumbled upon the Louboutin store by Notre Dame. I wasn't quite ready to go in, but looked through the window, scoping my options. I thought the store was a little small, but whatever.

On my last day of wandering, I directed myself back to the store. I was ready.

I walked in, looked around. The pair I liked from the website were far too expensive, but right next to them were the prettiest shoes I had ever seen.

I asked to try them on, but that store didn't have my size - the flagship store did though.


I made my way through the complicated Paris streets and numbering systems, walked by it a couple of times and finally found it. I walked in, tried them on and fell in love.


Aren't they pretty?!

I may not wear them a lot, obviously, but these shoes are totally a vacation highlight!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Vacation Highlight: New Friends

The day I went to Montmarte and Sacre Couer, I got painfully lost looking for Moulin Rouge. Well, not like actually lost, but frustratingly confused. I then saw two boys walking with an English Frommer's guide and asked if I could follow them to Moulin Rouge.

Um, best decision ever!

Peter and Roberto were friends, from Denmark and Houston, respectively, who met up in Paris for a quick vacation. Fun!

Not only did they help me find Moulin Rouge, they let me tag along for drinks and dinner and dancing. And then we hung out the next day and toured the Luxembourg Gardens and did a boat cruise of the Seine.

We parted ways just before I went to the Avett Brothers, but not before dinner at a resto Jarod recommended. Side story: we took a taxi 300 meters because we couldn't find the place the night before, only to have it end up being closed. Too funny.

Anyways, it was nice to have people to talk to over dinner and take pictures of and with. I really like traveling alone, don't get me wrong, but it is nice to have someone else remind you that what you're seeing / doing is real and not just a figment of your imagination.

So, yeah a shout out to Peter and Roberto.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Vacation Highlight: The Avett Brothers

A couple of months before my vacation, I noticed The Avett Brothers were touring Europe. Well luck was on my side, they were going to be in Paris while I was in Paris!

My St. Patrick's Day was spent with a few boys from North Carolina and it was awesome.

I've seen them before, in Vancouver with Steve and it was great, but they are more accomplished on stage now and I know their albums better. The boys brought their banjo - thank goodness, and I'd like to make a request to them to include it on all future records, it was the one thing I and Love and You was missing.

The crowd was small - the club's capacity is 250 and it wasn't a sold out show. The guys were awesome. A foot-stomping good show, and the French crowd was surprisingly knowledgeable about the music. They played I Would Be Sad which, let me tell you, will break your heart with every listen.


They were an incredibly gracious bunch, thanking the small crowd every chance they got.

All-in-all, splendid!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Well ...

I cannot properly capture how incredible my trip was, so I won't even try.

But it was absolutely perfect.

Everything from wandering around Paris for days, to spending a magical weekend with a pretty special boy - well, it is fair to say my expectations were exceeded.

No, I didn't get everything done I wanted to. I missed seeing many museums, and landmarks in Paris, but I did that city the way I like to do urban adventures - getting lost in them.

Getting lost helped me make a couple of new friends that helped take my Paris trip up several notches.

I am home now and so very sad. I was right, saying goodbye to the a certain Swiss boy was so difficult. For the first time since P3, I cried about a boy. I cried, in fact, for a good portion of the day.

And yes, I was annoyed, and had to lose a day of work with no pay, but I'd like to give a big shout out to British Airlines for the strike. Their cabin crew strike provided me just one more day with said boy. Thanks Unite!

So there you have it. If you want specifics, let me know via comments - I will do my best to answer them.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Tomorrow, I leave Switzerland.

I think tomorrow, I will be very sad.

I meet enough boys and have been on enough dates to know when I meet a good guy and when I meet a schmuck.

Unfortunately, I think I have met a good guy.

Why unfortunately? Well, I will likely never see this boy again. He will continue with his life and I will return to mine, and our paths may never cross again. And this makes me very sad.

Funny, cute, kind, smoker, and I have mentioned before, yay for accents. I have come to realize that these qualities are too few and far between in men. Often uptight and judgemental, to meet a person that is ok with you being silly and dressing crazy is a good thing.

Only he lives here and I live there.

So tomorrow, when I board the train and leave Switzerland, I think I will be very sad.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Paris Night 1

Gah - it has been a long day to get here. First, I am an idiot and went to the airport six hours in advance because I got the time of my flight wrong. No, I am not an amateur traveler, I was just a wee excited. 

The flight to London was fine, although I have to say there is something about a British accent that makes me want to be nice to the person with the accent. 

When I departed in London, I ran for my connection and barely made it, though my bags did not. When I landed in Paris, I got a text message from the person I am renting the apartment from. Apparently the one I reserved wasn't available, so he gave me his nicer suite in a different location for the same price. WOO HOO!

Although I had done all of my research for the previous location. 

Oh well. 

I waited for a couple of hours at the airport to get my luggage - otherwise they wouldn't have delivered it until after 10AM tomorrow - um, no. 

So I finally get to the apartment and it's in such a great location! A 5 minute walk to Notre Dame, 10 minutes from Pompidou, and a few more blocks to the Bastille.



I showered, got ready and around 11pm, went to explore. I got totally lost, walked for a few hours and came home nice and early - 2:30AM. My first meal in France - pizza. Nothing was open! I also got hit on.

Boys, if a girl is quietly sitting by herself eating a pizza, don't approach her mid-bite. It is poor form. 

Tomorrow will be another adventure. I have to orient myself to this new neighborhood - metro stops etc.

Where to tomorrow? I'm thinking about hitting the Louvre and doing a couple of museums. Who knows though. 

PS - leggings as pants are totally still ok here! YESSSSS! 

Thursday, March 11, 2010

A brief pause

I'll get back to the Olympic recap in a day or two, I promise. I just have to stop for a second and breathe.

Tomorrow I'm leaving for Paris.

It felt, for some time, like tomorrow would never be ... tomorrow.

And now it's here.

Oh, and I can't wait to land in Paris. I love that final descent into a new city - looking down, seeing a whole new, unexplored place. I will never forget the first time I landed at LaGuardia, I knew I was in love.

What will this descent be like? Will I like Paris as much as I love New York? Will I be laughed out of the city for not speaking even a hint of French?

The excitement, the wonder, the, well, the everything. I have heard so much about this city, from so many different people. Will the city live up to they hype?

We shall see.

My bags are packed. The outfits have all been carefully selected, with consideration given to form over function. Fuck function - I want fabulous.

I might not sleep tonight. I'm totally ok with it. I'll sleep on the plane. This feeling is too rare to be wasted sleeping.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

The rest of Week 1 - Pooped

The rest of week one was exhausting. The thing I forgot to mention was that two days before the Opening Ceremony, the company I work for was involved with a very large, very important event. What this meant was I had already worked 60 hours by the time Friday rolled around.

But fuck it - the Games are only here once, so party I did.

That made the following days more mellow. I watched hockey games with Team Vancouver, saw a live taping of the Colbert Report, did a media tour with CNBC, and just played it cool. The houses were super busy, and difficult to get into.

But on that Thursday, Jarod came for a visit. After a brief presentation, he realized I was right (as always) and that the Games were something he had to see. So he did.

That Thursday I fetched him from the SkyTrain station and we wandered about like tourists. We sat, we smoked, we gawked at the cauldron and the rings, went home and got ready to go out again. I had received a guest pass to USA House and Jarod tagged along with me.

This was the same nigh Evan Lysacek won the gold medal.

We got off the elevators and were greeted by huge group of people with their camera ready. They were disappointed it was just Jarod and I. I was totally freaked out.

We saw Vera Wang, hid out in a corner and were ambushed by a little press event. The gold medal was maybe 5 feet away from us - and we were Canadian! I had no idea how affected I would be by the medal, or to be near someone that happy. Imagine working your whole life for something, and then, just hours earlier, you achieved your goal, your hardwork paid off and you are the best at what you do.


Jarod. the photog, got some great pics of the medal and such. We had a fun little time. We left, went for a pint or two (I can't remember) ate some pizza, then went for third dinner at 3AM. On a Thursday.

We gorged and went home to ready ourselves for the next two days. I may have slipped into a light diabetic coma.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Day 2 - Exclusive!

On Saturday, I woke with a spring in my step. Despite the copious amounts of wine consumed the night before, I was up quite early.

There was work to do! On this Saturday, I was doing something not a ton of other people get to do - I was accredited for the Main Press Center. What does that mean? Well, the MPC is where all the officially accredited media hang out. They write their stories, attend the press conferences, run editorial meetings - basically, the MPC becomes their offices in Vancouver. 

There amongst the New York Times and USA Today was me! I was able to sit in on the first daily press briefing, where the questions focused on the very sad death of the Georgian luger, the riot that had finished minutes earlier and the malfunctioning hydraulic at the Opening Ceremony. It was an actual real press conference - with several language options and a room full of journos with their notepads and hands up. 


After the MPC I ran home to get all Canada-ed up. The Queen and her husband had graciously hooked Team Vancouver up with box seats to Canada vs. Slovakia Women's Hockey. Yup, the game where we won 18-0. While the game itself was one-sided, the crowd was incredibly gracious. In the end, Slovakia got a standing ovation and opened up their private pavilion because we were such gracious hosts. 

yay us!

Afterwards, Miss Sarin and I failed at getting into any houses on Granville Island, but ended up on a magical walk the brought us to the best view of everything going on - right next to Science World Sochi World. 

That's where I grabbed this shot of Sochi World. You see, the firm I work for helped to arrange for Sochi World to be at Science World. I remember putting together pieces of the pitch that made this happen!

Again, taken from my Blackberry. My good camera didn't arrive for a couple more days. 

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Day 1 - Who expected THAT!?

Week 1 was intense. I knew the city was going to be crazy, but I had no idea how crazy. By the end of Day 1 I was exhausted.

On Day 1 I got to see the Olympic Torch Relay! I was incredibly excited when I was sent on assignment to work with a photographer to get some pictures of the flame as it was in front of one of my clients' buildings. So I got to go and actually see the torch!

I have no idea who was running with it at the time, all I care about is that I got to see it! WOO HOO!

I also got to do a little geeky photoshoot with all of my Canadian gear, just in case anyone didn't believe me.

I watched the Opening Ceremonies with one of my bosses at BC Canada Pavilion, just above Robson Square. Robson Square was one of the Live Sites and they broadcast the events and stuff on the side of a big white building, with the ice skating palace and zip-lining going on just above it.

At the start of the evening, the area below looked like this:
(As taken from my Blackberry)

By the middle of the Opening Ceremony, it looked like this:

Do you see the difference! And that wasn't at it's worst.

The crowds were insane. I thought the Opening Ceremony was nice - I mentioned who I wanted to light the cauldron, but that didn't happen. C'est la vie. I thought they did a good job at representing Canada, and I loved that they had an outdoor cauldron, because it was right by my work, and I got to see it all the freaking time!

The party was cool - free food and free booze and the venue was awesome. I got to see the da Vinci exhibit without all the crowds or waiting in line because the event was at the Vancouver Art Gallery. Those were amazing.

So, that was Day 1. Day 2 was super fun too!

Friday, March 05, 2010


The past two weeks have been a whirlwind. I will try my best to recollect all the best events, and let me tell you, there were a lot.

I can say, without hesitation, the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics rocked my socks.

I drank for two weeks straight. I stayed up late for two weeks straight. I waited in lines for two weeks straight. And I got swept up in the Olympic movement in a big way.

It has been almost a full week since the Games ended and Vancouver may never feel the same to me again. For two weeks, this city was electric. The energy was palpable and everyone was kind and good-spirited. Now, back to normal. Ugh, I hate normal.

Some general impressions:

  • The Integrated Security Unit was amazing. I am generally not a big fan of cops, because they are big and intimidating, and I'm often drunk in public, but these guys were amazing. Not once were they menacing or intrusive, from what I saw. All I saw was them acting as crowd control - with my best interests in mind.
  • Holy bridge & tunnel. I feel so elitist, but Granville Street was easily the least amusing place to be in the world - each day was like a normal Friday night. It was full of stereotypicals from the nethers. I'm not going to be derogatory, so I will stop there.
  • I want to become an Olympic gypsy. I want to go to Sochi and work there for four years. I am in love with this feeling of community  and enthusiasm. It is intoxicating, and I am generally the most cynical person around. I received several comments on how my demeanor was so out of character. It kinda was.
  • I was surprised with how enthralled I got with the sports. Going in, I really didn't care about the 'sport' of it all, I was all about the parties, but after a couple of days, I was watching them quite a bit. The thing that amazes me are the storylines these athletes play out - I can't even read Joannie Rochette's name without welling up. Fuck - it's happening again.
  • I became an emotional mess. From Joannie to ever news montage with sappy music to every damn player profile. Ugh, I was constantly tearing up. Stupid emotions getting the best of me. 
I will go into greater detail, I promise, but I wanted to leave you with this:

Me and an actual gold medal around my neck. Not with plastic around it, or a show medal, but one that was handed to an Olympic champion. 

Neat right? 

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Spirit

Ok, I admit it. My cynical heart is totally warmed by the Olympic spirit.

In fact, I'm a little drunk with it. But more on that later.

Tomorrow, the Olympic cauldron will be lit. No one knows who will light the cauldron. It is apparently the best kept secret in Canada. Which in and of itself is pretty cool.

My thought is this: Wayne Gretzky will run the flame into BC Place, and together, with Betty Fox, they will light the torch.

I am extremely attached to the idea of Betty Fox lighting that cauldron.


You see, I was named after my grandmother. Originally, I was supposed to be named after Tanya Tucker, but three weeks before I was born, my grandmother, Iris Ann Suares, died. So, rather than just Tanya got Iris Tanya Ann.

Go ahead, you can't not say it with a southern accent.

I never knew my grandmother, but she has had such an impact on me. A lot of it has to do with the name, but I think much of it has to do with the unknown. I was the only one of my cousins that never knew her and the all spoke so highly of her. When I was young, the name felt like a burden, but I'm also convinced, the name won me a special place in my grandfather's heart.

She was also, despite the technical difficulties, the best grandmother I had.

I also didn't know Terry Fox. In fact, up until a few years ago, I had very little emotional attachment to Terry Fox.

That changed when my ma told me about how, after my grandmother lost her legs, my mom took her down to see Terry Fox run through Toronto. Apparently, it was something my grandmother felt very strongly about and was very adamant about doing.

To hear my mom tell this story, to paint this picture and to hear about how my favorite blanket, that I still use, was the same blanket used to cover my grandmother's legs so she wasn't embarrassed for being an amputee, and was there with her just weeks before she died, well that puts Terry Fox very close to my heart.

I mean, my blanket, the only tangible piece piece of this lady I never knew, was with her when she saw him. I think that is pretty special.

So I really hope it is Betty Fox. Like a lot.

For any people outside of the Great White North that may not know who Terry Fox is, Big Daddy posted a great video the other day:

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Birthday Treats!

I've mentioned a few times how much I love my birthday. I know it's lame, but I really do. It's the only day dedicated to you - even when it's not.

This year, I was a lucky duck and received a plethora of birthday treats.

First, Andi and Ron flew up from Edmo to help ease my aging-related sorrows. We wandered around the city on Saturday, went to an Edmonton bar for lunch and the game and basically walked our asses off. Oh, we saw the Main Press Centre and heard many a foreign accent ... the Games are gonna be good.

I digress.

The evening was supposed to be ... normal. Sarin had offered up her place for a gathering - I was thinking a pizza party, with booze and treats, and that would be that.

That wasn't that at all!

My Vancouver bitches blew me away.

Priscilla, Sarin and Mariel had put together one hell of a party actually. Complete with Justin Timberlake cake (I think I yelped when it came out), grown-up Twister (no nudity), theme, jello shooters, background images, ambient lighting, music, chicken & waffles, fondue ...

The list goes on and on.

And the best part: I had no fucking clue.

I LOVE surprises.

They are just oodles of fun - unless they're bad surprises, then, well, they aren't fun at all.

Anyways. Team Vancouver really caught me off guard.

So my 29th year started off really great - I felt very special.

Also, a chick in the bathroom at work was shocked when I told her my age. So, I'm totally ok with 29.

I'm totally ok with 29. I'm totally ok with 29. I'm totally ok with 29.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Two drink minimum

I had a great end to 2009 and a super beginning to 2010. Here's why:

I was drunk.

Drunkity, drunk drunk.

It started on December 19, when I landed in Edmo and continued until January 2, when I put down my last drink.

While I was at Jarod and Steve's I polished off their big bottle of Baileys and a ton o beer. At my parents, it was a well-stocked liquor cabinet that kept me ... sedated.

The real trouble began December 27th, when Ron, Big Daddy, and I watched football and drank - all day.

And drink we did.

The final count for the day:
2 Baileys and coffee
1 gallon of beer (we went through 3 of the image to the left. THREE!)
1 shot of JD (I almost hurled, and Jarod make sure everyone knew.)
1 random shot
2 bottles of beer at home
3 bottles of beer at the airport (That's what happens when you get delayed 4 hours)
2 glasses of wine at home again

What did this equal to? My mom yelling at me for being drunk for the first time since I was in my teens. And one hell of a hangover.

My dad asked how I expect to get married when I spend the day drinking with two boys. My response? "Who wouldn't want to marry a chick that can keep up with two grown men?"

Yes. I'm awesome. Or in need of rehab. I'm not entirely sure.