Every time I get a sandwich at the deli in the food court at work, after wrapping it, they stick those little party toothpicks through it and I think: silly, what do they need those for? They're stylish enough if you want to strike a pose with one in your teeth, sure, but otherwise?
After getting a breakfast sandwich this morning, I started back toward the office and tripped! This sent my sandwich sliding several feet ahead. As I sheepishly scooped it up, I was delighted to see it was intact.
My longstanding instinct when anyone asks how my mother is, is to say "crazy". It's always been tough discerning antics from bonafide symptoms with that one. I could say that anyone who's taken the time to have (and more or less raise) 9 children might be expected to be a little off her game but she did follow the rules printed in the manual: be fruitful and multiply.
Mother has always had an interesting approach. She once came home dismayed over the cost of replacing the side view mirror on her car without expressing any concern over who or what she'd sideswiped to lose the thing. When I was a smoker, she'd cough at the mere sight of a pack of matches to register disapproval.
Her most recent habit is to call my sister hinting that if she was going to the store, but only if she was going!, she needs milk, or bread, or something. My sister dutifully drops what she's doing and shows up with the requested item to be greeted with "I guess you never thought to bring dessert". With a nun in the family, there must be paperwork she can start to put my sister on the road to sainthood.
It's never easy to tell which mother you'll get. One day it's "I had such a good sleep" and another it's "I had a vision last night" and then you have to settle in. Unsettling.
I pay little attention to the higher power my mother's always inciting but knowing she'd most likely be impressed with a call from Rome, I did just that to say hi and let her know I was at that moment looking up at the Papal apartment from St. Peter's Square. She was truly amazed, with how clear the phone connection was.
For lasting impact, I bought her some jewellery in the Eternal City thinking this might hold some higher stead. I could almost hear her pride-sinning to her friends "My son bought it for me in Rome!". Instead, she promptly lost the necklace and said "You can get me another one".
I wrote a travelogue of my recent vacation and emailed it to my sisters. One of them printed it off and gave a copy to my mother. Now this impressed her! She even wrote me an old tyme letter to tell me: "We were amazed, it is so well done. Isn't it wonderful what people can do if given half a chance?"
There's no telling what's going on in that mind from minute to minute but I suppose I should just thank her for the 'half a chance'.
Snow flurries this morning remind me of the only positive thing I can think of about winter - fewer shirts to iron! Sweaters do all the heavy lifting! Maybe they'd be willing to take in the patio furniture?
A while back, I had the opportunity to shift focus and start work in a new area. This meant I got to keep all my old material and fling it at a somewhat interested new audience.
I now sit across from and in front of a couple of cheeky and charming British women both of whom have accents I could and do listen to all day.
Not long after I pulled up stakes and joined this group, another of my team members remarked to the British contingent while I was away:
"Isn't it a coincidence that all the Brits ended up sitting near each other?" to which the question was raised "Who do you mean?" "Well, you two and Dale. You all ended up sitting together!" "Dale's not British." "Oh? I thought he was because of his accent."
My voice, if you've heard it, does not sound like I was raised in the United Kingdom. This is largely because, I wasn't. My voice has a simple east coast Canadian trying not to sound too much like the trash I came from tone to it.
I'm not sure what we can learn from my co-worker's aural error other than to put some stock in the fact that perhaps regular ear cleaning can help you understand the world around you.
In the meantime, I remain pleased to sit near good folk who have an excellent and intriguing command of the language, who still laugh at my tired old jokes and who are as charming as fuck.
If you ever need someone to take one for the team, invite me to dinner.
After thoroughly enjoying the excellent musical play Ride The Cyclone at Theatre Passe Muraille and heady with remembering it is possible to be completely entertained for under 20 bucks, we headed for Buca to have drinks and dinner. The restaurant had a bricked and warehouse-y feel but managed to be warm and inviting.
Wine, cocktails and appetizers were decided on after some discussion and I settled back with a delicious vodka based drink finished off with elements of pepper and pear. After a preliminary taste, I set it down rather than guzzling it the way I wanted to.
The server came back to fuss with things ahead of the food arriving and got things off to an exciting start by knocking my drink from the table all over my right side (I've found there is no wrong side when these things happen). Apologies and enough napkins to start a quilt didn't help much with drying off my black pants but did help with the appearance I was quite skilled in the lint harvesting arts.
While the splash down my leg left the impression of a not particularly well executed hate crime, I was determined to grin and bear it - I'm sufficiently annoying when things are going quite well. Thankfully, the food was fantastic and pulled focus from my tragicomic predicament and the evening ended on good notes several hours later.
This is not the first time I've had to wet-crotch my way through a dinner service. Once on a long flight, my light grey pants enjoyed a full glass of white wine just ahead of the "chicken or fish?". While my undercarriage seemed no worse for wear after 6 hours of dampness, my pants definitely were. On another occasion just before attending the opera for a grand evening, another full glass found its way into my lap at dinner. It's not over until the fat lady pours out her heart and possibly a drink onto you.
If someone is bound to end up wet not-by-choice, it'll be me, you're safe. So please, take me to dinner - you're assured to look as fresh and happy as when your evening began while I'll be left with more practice than I need at perfecting the fine art of Canadian restraint.
A few afternoons ago during my lunch break, I was outside in the seating area near my office among a fair number of other people. A blind man who works in my building was standing a few feet away from me having a smoke. He has a cane that he uses but doesn't wear the cool shades so many of those hipster blind guys do. One look at his eyes and it's pretty plain to see he's differently abled.
A touristy looking couple approached and of all the people to ask directions from, they went up to him. "Excuse me but can you tell us where the nearest McDonald's is?" He said "See that door over there?" He pointed accurately and directly to the door a few feet away. "Go through there, down the escalator and into the food court and the McDonald's is on your left at the end". "Thank you". The couple walked directly past the door he'd just pointed out and continued up the street toward the next building which has no entrances on that side looking more lost than before.
When a blind man gives sighted people directions they can't follow, I have faith that I will continue to laugh at the human race until I can no longer see straight.
Last Thursday, the mercury (do they still use mercury in anything but fish?) hit an astonishing 49 degrees Celsius with the humidity factored in (that's 120.2 degrees Fahrenheit!). "I'm melting, I'm melting" seems to be the refrain all over the continent.