Monday, October 31, 2005

Today I Hate This City

Fuck Toronto.

Well, mostly the people.

Well, mostly the bus drivers.

Well, mostly this one guy who touched me inappropriately and called me sweet heart.
Not cool.
TTC, be prepared to feel my wrath.

Friday, October 28, 2005

What do you get when you cross the Friday Fuckfest with Ask Jamie?

Jamie's Lusty Guide to Better Sex: answering all the burning sex questions you asked, and some you didn't.

Note: there IS a difference between burning sex questions, and sex questions about burning. In the case of the latter, see a doctor.

Junebugg has the distinguished honour of getting us started today. She's the "heavy petting" portion of today's post, if you will. She asked: At what age are you too old for sex?

I'll be the first to admit that everything I know about senior citizens and sex, I learned from the Golden Girls.


Now, I know that traditionally, Blanche was the sexy one, but personally, it's Rose that always did it for me. I mean, there's just something about a dumb blonde. Am I right? And there are some definite advantages to doing it with an older chick:

a) You can't knock her up.
b) No more worrying about "that time of the month."
c) Every night can be a one-night stand when senility is a factor.
d) They're pretty easy - at their age, the pool of available men has shrunk, so even ugly dudes have a pretty good chance of scoring.

Of course, nowadays the Golden Girls would hardly be considered old. 60 is not old. 60 is still kicking. The Gilmore Girls are the new Golden Girls.

So at what age are you actually TOO OLD for sex?

Well, that depends.

For women, never.

For men, about 4 minutes after death. Not counting rigor mortis.

However, there are some things that should come with mandatory age limits:

1. body glitter
2. hooker boots
3. speedos (although frankly, these should be shunned by even young hard-bodies)

So there you have it: have sex until you die. Be proud of your graying pubes. Embrace your wrinkled but experienced body. Sex will keep you young at heart.


Next up: Becky Bumblefuck asks: With the advent of low-rise pants, ass-crack for girls is the newest phenomenon. Is this good? (Compare and contrast to the widely accepted bad-view on boy ass-crack). For bonus credit, include photos.

Ass crack is bad. All ass crack is bad.

Note to Avril Lavigne: your ass crack is particularly offensive to me. Nothing will get you slapped with my much-feared Fucktwat stamp like a generous dose of your chubby little ass crack.

As I was saying: butt crack is bad, in all shapes and forms. Even if your ass crack is the most (or only) impressive cleavage that you have, keep it covered. You may think you have a cute ass. Maybe you do, maybe you don't. But all ass crack reminds us of the original crack. Every crack may as well be this one:

Way not cool. Fortunately, there's a new and innovative product on the market to help combat this unappetizing phenomenon. It helps keep pants where they belong. It's called a belt. Maybe you've heard of it? Get one. Wear it. Keep your pooper to yourself. Case closed.


Shane asks the bravest question of all: For you, what is 'in love'?

The fact is, I'm really not into the lovey dovey stuff. Jason and I started out as just 2 kids who liked to screw. Now, years into the marriage, we're still just 2 kids who like to screw. The only difference is, now I will very occasionally consent to cuddle for a couple of minutes afterward. And that, for me, is in love.


Finally, demented Jorge poses this awkward question, that is probably none of his business, but far be it from me to turn anyone away: If I was to depart on an airplane leaving Toronto for London, and a friend was leaving Mexico City to Tokyo on a slightly faster airplane, what would be the acceptable age to remain a virgin until provided that I was a single Chinese amish woman?

Now, I don't have a lot of experience with any of those components, so I gathered round a smattering of my Chamish (chinese-amish) girlfriends, and took a random sampling of their opinion. Popular (unanimous, in fact) consensus was that virginity should be preserved until marriage.

However, I could not help but sense a palpable surge of sexual energy in the room. Prim and proper on the outside, I believe that these girls are real tigers underneath the bonnet and long skirts. Now, I'm not saying that all amish women are closet sex fiends. All I'm saying is this: where I come from, if a power outage lasts more than 2 hours, there will be a marked baby boom 9 months later. Amish people live with no electricity at all. They don't watch TV. They don't gamble. They don't bake special brownies. They're not even allowed to paint each other's toenails. wouldn't surprise me if they found some other way to entertain themselves. So Jorge, in the unlikely event that you woke up this morning a Chamish woman, keep this in mind: it's always the quiet ones.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Sex is Damn Funny

The incident: So, Sunday morning we were having a little sumfin sumfin that turned out to be a memorably funny episode. I managed to contain myself for only a few seconds, and then collapsed into a fit of giggles. Jason collapsed soon after, pinning me face-down between him and the mattress. With every giggle I risked aspirating more mattress, but it was impossible to stop.

And then we had "one of those days":

Scene 1: the grocery store
Context: sale on Pepsi; limit 12 per customer

Jason is quickly burrowing into the cart, trying to make room for the 12 2L bottles of Pepsi that are impossible to pass up. He hears an indistinct thud, but keeps on task clearing space. When he turns around, he finds his wife with a pained look on her face. Her right leg is buried knee-high under Pepsi.

Jamie: Didn't you hear the bang?
Jason: I heard a bang, but I didn't imagine that it was you!
Jamie: I'm ALWAYS involved when there's banging!

Of course we dissolved into laughter all over again at that. A fellow shopper not only shot me a very dirty look, but she actually placed her hands over her daughter's ears. Sheesh. Now my foot is bruised and throbbing, and I can't help but remember how look it took to heal from an eerily similar Perrier episode earlier this summer.

Scene 2: our bathroom
Context: mounting a rack on the back of the door for towels and such

Jamie: I hate screwing! I'm so sore from screwing I'll never screw again.
Jason: (on the phone, unbeknownst to Jamie), Um, yes Mom, that's Jay...she says hi.

For some reason, Jason has a real knack for calling people right before I say something very incriminating.

Scene 3: a little store that sells old records, movies, etc
Context: Jason has just flipped to a DVD he thinks I'll get a kick out of, The Pickle

The Pickle just makes me frown. It reminds me of a month ago, when we were in this new city looking to rent a new apartment, and we drove by a mall that mysteriously advertised The Pickle Barrel. For the next week, I dreamed of the barrels filled with pickles, dreamed even of sample pickles on sticks, adored this little pickle store...until we actually moved, and to my chagrin, discovered that The Pickle Barrel was just a restaurant and nothing special at all.

Jamie: I'm not impressed, considering the recent episode I had with a disappointing pickle.

Ohmigod, how did that one even come out of my mouth? We laughed so hard I'm surprised we weren't kicked out.

Scene D: Yorkdale
Context: aggressive salesman darts out of nowhere with sample moisturizer

Jamie: (emphatically) No thanks.
Jason: Oof. Shut down.
Jamie: Well you know I don't like it when random men squirt their stuff on me.


Monday, October 24, 2005

Waxing Philosophical

I hate cleaning. I really hate cleaning. I consider this to be one of life's great ironies because I really hate when things are dirty. This presents a problem for me, because I often find that I spend 5, sometimes 6 hours in quiet contemplation of whether I will hate it more to get off my duff to clean, or to sit in filth a moment longer. Luckily, somewhere in that 5th hour, my old friend laziness will visit and make the decision for me.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Friday Fuckfest - Its Triumphant Return

"Objectifying Men Since Earlier This Year"

Fucktard of the Week:

Martin Campbell

Not familiar with the name? Yeah, me neither; I had to look it up. This just goes to show you how cheesed off I am at him - I am allergic to looking things up. But since this man is chiefly responsible for the downfall of the James Bond franchise, I do deem him this dubious honour.

That's right, Martin Campbell is the fucker who cast Daniel Craig as the new James Bond. Let me go on record to say that it was a HUGE mistake to replace Pierce Brosnan in the first place. That man is smooth, debonair, and capable of removing panties with just a cock of his sexy eyebrow - everything a 007 should be. Now, I have nothing against this Daniel Craig guy in general, he's not even on my radar. But a Bond he is not. Who is this guy? A brief overview of his history reveals much blandness: it includes forgettable small movie roles, and embarrassingly, quite a few made-for-TV ones. The guy leaves me cold and bored. James Bond should make you tingle. James Bond should make you either want to be him, or be with him. This guy just makes me yawn.

James Bond? The James Bond? He looks to me more suited to play 'guy in street #3'. Bleh. I am so underwhelmed by this choice that I fell asleep 3 sentences ago. There's no mysterious air. There's no mischievousness, no sense of danger, no boyish charm.

Original: Bond. James Bond.
Daniel Craig: James Bond. But you can call me Jim.

Original: Shaken, not stirred.
Daniel Craig: Do you have iced tea?

Original: No more foreplay.
Daniel Craig: Just hold me.

Well, I think you catch my drift. Maybe Daniel Craig is an okay guy. Maybe he loves puppies and helps little old ladies cross busy intersections and conserves water. But I still think he is the worst thing to ever happen to the James Bond franchise.

The thing that really breaks my heart is knowing how close it came to anyone else. Any-fucking-one else.

They passed on Ewan McGregor reportedly because he's too short. What a load of crap. Ewan would have made a much better Bond - he's devilish and cocksure. Too short? There is one lousy inch difference between Ewan and Daniel, and if they succeed in casting Angelina Jolie as the new Bond Girl, they'd both be screwed anyway.

Hugh Jackman was rejected for being too sensitive and penetrating. James Bond, apparently, is not a thinker. This is true enough, but at least Hugh has a certain level of suaveness that is sadly lacking in Daniel.

Colin Farrell was deemed to be too sleazy, and who can argue with that? James Bond is NOT a womanizer, he's a ladies' man, and yes, there is a BIG difference. He's a lovah baby, and when he leaves the next morning, at least he doesn't leave behind disease. But at least Colin looks like he could successfully bed a woman; Daniel looks like the kind of guy who has clammy hands just thinking about the goodnight kiss.

Eric Bana (the dude from Hulk) was dismissed as "not handsome enough". Ouch. Apparently the producers conducted Daniel's auditions over the phone because no such parallels were drawn.

This week, 2 very special mini fuck-yous go out to both Ian and Jorge, who earn the distinction for having led me to believe that a relatively safe choice was being made: Mr. Clive Owen. Now this guy was a great choice. This guy gives me that achy feeling that my loins deserve for sitting through another James Bond movie. He's dark and brooding and enigmatic. This guy makes me believe that there may be life after Pierce. This is a Bond I could get behind...and better yet, I'd like to get under him. Ian, Jorge, you let me down! Whatever happened to Clive?

Of course, I still say that Quentin Tarantino had it right (and frankly, how many times in my life will I ever say that?): he wanted to direct the new movie, Casino Royale, and he backed Pierce to continue in Bond's shoes. I have to admit, that is a movie I would have paid my $12 to see. I think Tarantino would have breathed some new life into a franchise that has suffered from poor writing and lack of imagination of late, while keeping Brosnan, who really epitomizes the Bond role. Best of both worlds, if you ask me.

Unfortunatly, no one did. Craig it is.
Sorry folks.

Most Fuckable of the Week:

I didn't have to look far for this week's inspiration, because this is the guy who made James Bond into the bankable stud he is today: the venerable and incomparable Sean Connery.

Oh that accent, the way he rolls his r's so sexily on his tongue...the confident grin, the piercing looks. They broke the mold with this guy.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Happy In A Better Life

Two years ago, I had everything going for me: I graduated from university the same week I celebrated my first wedding anniversary. I got a job in a field I loved and looked forward to starting the next chapter of my life. But right before this new chapter would begin, I got sick. At first I thought I had a sore tail bone, but when I woke up one morning with an oozing, open sore on my back, we quickly realized that something wasn't right.

The next 2 months are hazy for me because I was pumped full of pain meds - "the worst pain you can live through" is what my doctor called it. Two surgeries later, Jason was struggling to work enough to support us both and be home enough to take care of me and deal with the guilt that was eating at him. And they fired him for it (we missed the new compassionate leave laws by a year). We thought that this would be a good time as any to start over, and so we headed to our hometown, Cornwall, where Jason believed I would get better care and we could think about settling down.

We'd wanted to try Cornwall before I fell ill; we thought that it would be a good move real-estate wise but wanted to test the waters first. So maybe we would have ended up there whether I got sick or not. All I can say for sure is that I was heavily drugged when we made the decision, and within 3 little days, our lives were flipped upside down.

After the infection was drained from my back, the danger subsided and I wasn't "sick" anymore, just in an awful lot of pain. What should have been a fairly simple procedure didn't quite turn out that way. My doctor told me to expect 8-12 months of rehab. When you're 22, that seems like eternity. At first I had a nurse at home with me to clean the crater in my back, but soon it was just me and The Hole.

We called it The Hole because that's what it was: the doctors took about 2 golfballs worth of flesh out of my back. The hole had to remain "open" for several months so the scar tissue would fill in from the bottom up. What an agonizing process. As you can imagine, a hole in your back really limits your mobility. Some days I was trapped in bed, unable to move. Eventually the hole filled in, but the pain remained. I was shuffled between doctors a long time.

A year passed. Just a few weeks ago, I had a piece of scar tissue removed that was trying to poke its way through my back (which, believe me, makes sitting a nightmare). Anyhow, I feel fine these days. I expect to live with some pain all my life because the skin is weak, but unless I aggravate it, I have been able to forget about it for the first time in a year and a half. Ahhhh.

But still, The Hole stole a year and a half from my life. That's a long time. It felt even longer in Cornwall. It felt longer in Cornwall because it's a small town where nothing ever happens for the under-60 crowd. It felt longer because we'd left all of our friends behind. It felt longer because the job market is limited and Jason made half of his Ottawa salary. It felt longer because for the majority of the time, I was unable to work at all, and then when I felt up to it, it was pointless for a person of my experience and education to expect to find a job. There were none. There was nothing. But Cornwall felt particularly long because of the family situation.

Cornwall marked the first time in my married life that I was living in the same city as our family. You might think we'd see them more often living within a couple of kilometres of each other, but you'd be wrong. We saw each other maybe once every month or two. This was fine; we were all busy people (except for me; I layed in bed and bid goodbye to my waist).

I made a mistake. I revealed a weakness. I expressed disappointment that my life had derailed. I cried in front of my mother once. And once was all it took. Based on that one little visit, my mother and my 3 sisters decided to take my life in their hands. They diagnosed me: depressed. Severely depressed. They had me on suicide watch.

Of course, I assured them that I was not depressed. I was disappointed. I felt justified in being sad at my helpless situation. But depressed? Not likely. Jason and I still found something to laugh about each and every day. I had a hole in my back, but gosh, that's not everything. We had a lot of good days. Jason smirked at the mere suggestion that I could be depressed, as would most of my friends. I have the perpetual smile. I have more exuberance than most rooms can contain. I have passion where no passion even belongs. My family chose not to see any of this. The chose not to believe me, or Jason. They judged me based on one bad day, and never even visited on any of the good ones.

That summer, in addition to poverty, restlessness, frustration, and The Hole, I had to deal with my family. My mother covertly planned to get me "help". She anticipated my refusal, so she began planning on ways to kidnap me to a doctor's. She tried to involve Jason - asked him whether I talked about wanting to die, even. When Jason told me about this, I almost had a meltdown. My mother may as well have had her hands tightly around my throat, because I couldn't breathe.

My family didn't visit. I didn't receive pleasant phone calls or happy emails. I was simply put under the microscope. They spied on us. If they thought Jason and I had had a fight, this was further proof of my depression. If I slept in, or left the house without makeup, or took more than 3 rings to answer the phone, it was noted and counted against me. This put Jason and I under enormous pressure, and eventually I was so upset about subjecting Jason to my crazy family that I seriously wanted to set him free. He sat me down and said to me: "For better or worse; in sickness and in health." And that's that.

But over the next year, the relationship between myself and my family has been strained at best. I don't know how to forgive their actions. How can I sit and eat dinner with people who would have had me committed given the chance? Had they been motivated by concern, I could deal with that. But they weren't interested in my health or well-being, they just seemed to take pleasure in finding or imagining imperfections in my life.

A few months of this had me going out of my mind. Imagine if your whole family just decided out of the blue that you were crazy. It's enough to make you crazy if you weren't already. Jason tried to reason with them, to no avail. He said explicitly: Jamie is fine. The only thing that is not fine, is you guys. But they believed I was forcing him to say these things, you know, gun to his head and whatnot, and were unconvinced.

Eventually I had to cut the ties to save my sanity. I was at my wit's end. I don't to this day know what I ever did to deserve that kind of persecution. I haven't spoken to my family in almost a year now. I can't handle being judged constantly. I don't know how to be part of a family who will only ever think the worst of me. The only contact I have had with them is from sporadic emails from my sisters, the extent of which usually boils down to "you are a horrible person." Finally, Jason blocked their ip address, preventing them from writing to me anymore. But we knew that whether or not they could write me harassing, malicious emails, they were still keeping tabs on us. We knew that our only option was to move.

And so here we are, away from probing eyes at last. I mourn the loss of my family, but I don't see how the relationship will ever be mended. If they suddenly woke up contrite, I might forgive, but I don't know how to forget. I don't know how this story ends. I do know that my mother wants to love me conditionally. And I know that if it has conditions, it just doesn't feel like love to me. I think I deserve more, but I also know that more is not a choice: take it as it is, a bitter pill to swallow, or take nothing at all. Who can teach me to forget? Who here knows the secret?

I couldn't figure it out. I couldn't live under the disapproving gaze. We picked up, started over once again, away from the countryside, straight to the city, where here, for the first time in a long time, I could take a full, deep breath once again. We were downtown near Queen St. before I finally found my fresh air.

I think I can be happy here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Not Any More

She bags your groceries, and always remembers to put your eggs on top.

She sits beside you at Thanksgiving dinner, laughing thinly at your bad turkey jokes.

She drives the neighbourhood kids to soccer practice in her Volvo.

She sits in class quietly and turns in her reports on time.

She shops with you, and gives good advice, and loves apple martinis.

She writes a blog that you read. You think she's funny and insightful.

But you don't know her; not really. You have no idea.

There are stories she doesn't tell, not even to herself. She has lied to you, to her friends, to her family, so many times that she can't keep them straight.

She has more concussions on file than a football player. She was lucky to regain consciousness at all last time.

She goes home to plaster a hole in the wall that was made when he threw her there.

She wears long sleeves because of the burn marks, not because she's cold.

She's tired because she got locked out of the house, barefoot in the snow again last night, not because she stayed up too late watching Law & Order.

She smiles at strangers because she's terrified of being transparent.

She lied about the scar on her leg. It wasn't from figure skating.

She doesn't cry at movies because even death doesn't seem all that tragic to her.

She believes that maybe it is her fault, that she is that stupid, that she does deserve it. She is ashamed.

She has learned to keep secrets well. She has learned to flinch at shadows. She has learned which foundation covers bruises the best. She has learned to fall asleep on a pillow drenched with tears.

The one thing she won't ever learn is to forget.

Don't be a victim of silence.

Purple Ribbon

October is domestic violence awareness month in the U.S. and child abuse prevention month in Canada - both are worthy causes.

If you are an abused woman, seek help. Keep asking until you get it. It is never too late to get help.

If you suspect that a child is being abused or neglected, contact your local children's aid society immediately. Many cases go unreported. People hesitate to report possible abuse because they aren't certain or want to wait to see what happens.

Do not wait. Children die while you wait for concrete evidence.

It is not your job to be certain. It IS your job to help protect the innocent in your community. Make the call. A trained social worker will then visit the family in question and make the judgment call. You have done your part.

If you think someone may already have called, call anyway. A file is opened for every phone call received. If more than one phone call is received for a certain child, the urgency of the visit will increase.

Don't be afraid of retribution; your name will not be revealed to the family and your anonymity will be protected.

It's every day people who make the difference.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Happy Bloggaversary to Kill the Goat!!

Today I wish The Goat a very happy 1st anniversary. Yes, this day in history just one short year ago, The Goat was just a baby lamb. Oh wait. That's another thing. The Goat was a kid. A kid goat. It was in its infancy, anyway.

Not that it's quite an adult yet. No grown-ups here. It's maybe a teenager, or a tween-goat. A twoat, if you will. Complete with attitude, pimples, and excessive masturbation.


Just so you know, the traditional gift for a one year anniversary is paper. Here is a list of the paper gifts I would love to receive:

-50 dollar bills
-100 dollar bills

The Goat has had an exciting year:

239 posts written
198 657 words written
76 000 visitors (since mid-Feb)
12 days accident-free!*
1 1/2 of my famous Big Fat Chewies cookies consumed during the writing of this post

*accident refers to bloodshed upwards of 1 quart; less than 1 quart is classified as an 'oopsie', which are not counted unless they leave scars.

During the past year, I have gone through 3 computers, 2 apartments, 2 keyboards, and roughly 1.3 billion brain cells. My most popular search results are consistently for

a) goat sex
b) fuckfest
c) girls wearing thongs

None of which have been my finest moments (although I still maintain that I do not regret the goat...she was hot). I hope The Goat has many more fine moments to come.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

La Vache Qui Rit

I am lying in bed. Jason is sitting on top of me, poking me in the belly.

Jamie: Ach. I am such une vache.

Jason: No you're not, you're un princesse.

Jamie: Une princesse. And yes, I'm that too, but still. I just wish you were into chubby girls, that would make life so much easier.

Jason: I am into chubby girls!


Jason: Hmm. I see now that that was the wrong answer. What I meant was, I love all the girls.

Jamie: You love all the girls? That's comforting.

Jason: No, no, no. I meant, I love all you girls.

Jamie: All us girls? What girls are those?

Jason: You! Just you! I love you!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Dear U-haul,

You suck.

I believe it takes a pretty soulless person to rent a barely safe truck to a person who has never done you any harm, but to charge an arm and a leg for it, well, there's just no word for that.

Last weekend, I paid $520 for the "privilege" of borrowing a truck for 3 days. Except I did not receive it for 3 days. I was told, when I left a generous deposit, that I could pick the truck up at 9am on moving day. The night before, a nameless individual informed me that I could possibly be driving for up to 1 hour to pick up this truck. Perhaps you are unfamiliar with your business. It's renting truck to people who are moving. People who are moving have other things to do than to chase after the thing you have already promised to provide for them. But on the moving day itself we were given the "good news" that a truck would be available for us right here in town - but. Ah, BUT. But, we'd have to wait several hours before we would have access to it.

Now, when I rented the truck, someone immediately said to me "Are you sure you want to go with Uhaul? 80% of their fleet just got pulled from the road for being unsafe." Funny that you didn't mention this when you were counting my money. But when you did mention that our truck was in the shop that very morning, I found it worrisome instead of comforting. After all, we would be driving this thing, packed to the gills with our beloved belongings, and towing our car behind it, nearly 600km. I shouldn't have to worry about the road-worthiness of a truck that we just broke the bank to rent.

Now, perhaps if I had received the truck as soon as it was done in the shop, our story would have ended there. That didn't happen. It didn't happen because u-haul is a greedy beast, and they thought, 'hey, we're already getting $520 out of this old clunker, why not try for more?' And so you rented out the same truck twice in one day. And you let the other lady have it first. And when she returned it 7 hours after it was promised to us, and on empty, it was our problem because "pick up times cannot be guaranteed". Right. Tell me, wherever did you find print tiny enough for that clause? Does it really seem reasonable to you that some other person's move ate into ours?

Luckily, thanks to some back-breaking labour, we were able to load the truck up in the dark that night and our move was not much delayed. However, it was when we hit the road that nightmare really began.

Before we pulled out of the u-haul parking lot, the lady told us, nay, swore to us, that the transmission had recently been fixed, and that for some odd reason the clunking noise persisted, but that the mechanic had guaranteed that "it would not fall out on us." Obviously, this made me feel much, much better. Until we got onto the highway. And then, for the next 7 hours, we were treated to the lovely sound of metal grating against asphalt at high speeds. Mmm. Just what my u-haul induced migraine needed. But I thought to myself, no problem, I'll just sleep on the way up since I had to pack long into the night and thus did not get nearly enough sleep to feel up to unpacking when we arrived. But did I sleep? No, I did not. Not a wink. You see, it is almost impossible to get comfortable when you are fighting to breathe. The thing is, when a seatbelt is crushing your windpipe it does not allow for optimal sleep conditions. Interesting, isn't it? I thought so. Especially since the truck, which was rusty, dirty, older than me, and probably wouldn't pass a safety test despite the sparky transmission job, did not look very trustworthy in the first place, rendering my seatbelt pretty much my last line of defense. All kinds of worst-case scenarios flashed through my mind.

Thanks to my husband's patience and good driving, we reached our destination more or less safely. Jason had a crick in his neck from ducking to see under the chips in the windshield, but what the hell, it's not like you need to see very well to drive 30 feet of machinery through downtown Toronto.

We unloaded the truck as quickly as our arms and legs would allow us, mindful of the growing dusk. Normally we would be more kind to our muscles and take things slowly, but the lady at the u-haul place had frowned on our driving the thing after dark since there were no lights on the back of the trailer and shockingly, she had no replacement bulbs on hand. Shucks. I credit my husband for pulling us through. He was strong and quick and encouraging even when I thought I would throw up from being exhausted. By 8 o'clock we were done. The truck was empty, and ready to be returned.

All we needed to do was to hitch the trailer onto the truck, and drive it to the depot. Or so we thought. Turns out, the hitch was broken. Fancy that. It only tooks 2 hours in the pitch black in a new city where we knew not one soul to figure out how to make do with defective equipment. We were quite pleased with this new development, as I'm sure you could imagine.

So, blackened with grease and tired to the bone, we climbed into the cab of the truck, back to the seatbelt that actually chafed a layer of skin off my neck to the point of bleeding, and headed for the return point. As mentioned before, we had just moved. I think this is worth repeating because u-haul apparently has no idea to whom it is renting its trucks. We moved. To a new city. Therefore, it would have been nice, helpful even, if the u-haul lady would have been willing to tell us where exactly to drop the thing off. However, it was Friday, and as I said, we had been put off until quite late, so I guess she was itching to get home. She was unwilling to look it up, so she told us to just bring it anywhere. So, despite the fact that the good people of u-haul had already delayed us by more than 8 hours, we had to cut into our loading time to research a u-haul place in a foreign city, and plot it out on an unfamiliar map.

Since the broken hitch had set us back 2 hours, we were infact driving down unknown streets without tail lights. Is there a patron saint for unlukcy u-haul renters? It would have been nice to know. But finally, we saw the u-haul signs, and we pulled the truck into the lot. Jason ran inside to drop off the key, but he came back out shaking his head.

The man inside informed him that this location did not accept equipment. In fact, it wasn't a u-haul place at all, never had been, despite the signs and ad in the yellow pages. It was listed as one, but wasn't one.

Sorry, my bad. I obviously should have just assumed that u-haul just lists some red herrings just to butt-fuck their customers a little more.

Of course this guy is unable to provide us even with directions to a new place, so we had to drive around Toronto, in the dark, with a 30 foot truck and trailer, looking for a phone book. It was after 1am before we found an appropriate location and believe me, if words and wishes came true, anyone who has ever been affiliated with u-haul would be pushing up daisies today.

rental for a truck that almost killed me: $520
gas for the truck that almost killed me: $180
knowing that that which does not kill you only makes you stronger: priceless? I think not. We paid $700 for a harrowing, stressful experience, and I am NOT happy about it.

Here's hoping that the following search terms will help spread the u-haul hate: I hate u-haul, u-haul almost killed me, Toronto uhaul, u-haul hell, don't rent from u-haul, boycott u-haul, u-haul is unsafe, uhaul sucks, u-haul is the worst thing that ever happened to me, u-haul is evil, George W. Bush owns u-haul, Ontario uhaul, u-haul can kiss my ass, u-haul is dangerous, u-haul rents damaged trucks, Canada uhaul, uhaul is bad, renting from u-haul is like renting from Hitler.

p.s. As dearest Ian points out, the most impressive feature that u-haul boasts of is its luxurious cloth seats, which I bet are not that luxurious on the best of days, but in our case, the truck was so old that the stencilling was actually reduced to "clot eats". Yummy, eh?

Other angry u-haul customers (because you know I'm not alone):


After a month of communication, this is what I receive on November 21st:

Dear Mrs. Jay,

Thank you for your communication received.

We apologize that your move did not go as you planned.

This is to inform you that we will not be reimbursing you for any part of this rental.

Based on the feedback provided, we consider this matter resolved.

Donna Sweeney
U-Haul Company Scarborough, ON

I'm sure you all can imagine my pleased response to this email.

And that's all you'll hear from me - lawsuit pending.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Happy Turkey Day

It's great to give thanks and gorge one's self on pumpkin pie, but this long weekend also brings a celebration of a different kind...

happy birthday to the biggest turkey of them all,

my husband.

To Jason on his birthday:

I know you are WAY TOO LOADED to read this right now, but I sincerely hope that your second quarter-century is as fun-filled as your first was.

Enjoy your special day, and I'll see you later about your spankings.

p.s. Sorry the streamers were so crappy. I couldn't find the tape.


Thursday, October 06, 2005

Free Stuff For Sale

So we moved. To Toronto. For no apparent reason. In a u-haul that had no shocks.

This is our story.

A short blonde woman was going stir-crazy living in small town Cornwall, Ontario. She began dropping hints to her husband, such as "I want to move", "let's move", and "get me out of here before I kill us both."

Eventually the husband, who we'll call Jason, began to think that maybe his lovely wife wanted to move or something. So he put out feelers, thinking it would be mighty responsible of him to find a job and a home before striking out. But the beautiful and luminescent wife, who we'll call Jay, said something to the effect of "NOW!!!" and so they pilfered boxes where they could, and packed up all their belongings, rented a truck that did not look road-safe, and went.

But not smoothly. Oh no, they did not go smoothly.

First, they encountered the universal packing problem. Too much stuff, too few boxes. Where had all this stuff come from? When a couple gets together, they bring their stuff together. He had stuff, and she had stuff. At first, her stuff, pink and frilly, sat uncomfortably beside his stuff, plaid and ugly. But eventually his stuff and her stuff co-mingles. It becomes just general stuff. A year or two into things, the couple will take a look at their stuff and decide what should go, and what should stay. Mostly, his stuff will go. They find that although they have 2 copies now of the same Smashing Pumpkins albums, neither of them owns a frying pan. So the couple goes out into the world and buys new stuff, jointly. They outfit their home with all the essentials: linens, cookware, decor, appliances, etc. Then they decide to get married, and people bring them gifts to celebrate the engagement. Then there are bridal showers, to which people bring gifts to celebrate. And the wedding, to which people bring gifts to celebrate. And even though the couple has been living together for years now, therefore obviously having at least one of all the essentials, people give gifts of towels and towels and more towels, and pots and pans, and sheets, and other stuff that the couple neither needs nor has room for, but must politely be grateful for nonetheless.

And then, over time, the stuff they bought and the stuff they were given gets together and multiplies. And then one day, the couple will move. And they will want to place their heads inside the nearest oven for fear of all this stuff.

Yes indeed. This is what happened to Jay and Jason.

Previously, they lived in a spacious 2-level, 2-bedroom townhouse in Ottawa. It had its own storage room, laundry room, walk-in closet, balcony and patio. Jay and Jason filled this space quite well. When they moved to Markham, however, they discovered that there are no apartments or townhouses for rent there. All renters live in basements of large houses in massive subdivisions. These basement apartments come in 2 varieties: large and disgusting, or small and clean. Jay and Jason thought long and hard on this subject: was it better to possibly contract some sort of fatal disease from the mouldy carpet in one's dwelling but have room for the 87 pairs of shoes that Jay insists she cannot get rid of, or to live in a hole that is literally smaller than the walk-in-closet at the last place? They mulled and mulled, and then chose the option that would allow them to shower without special shoes.

However, once they had all their boxes towering over them in the tiny new apartment, they began to regret this decision. Jay and Jason are 2 people: Jay, and Jason. They own 37 bath towels, 4 beach towels, 10 hand towels and most puzzling, 22 face cloths. Jay and Jason do not have a linen closet in which to put all these towels. They have 7 casserole dishes; 3 sets of sheets for a single bed, though they do not have a single bed; a barbecue and patio set though they have no patio; an air-conditioner that is much too big for the basement-sized windows; 18 mixing bowls and 7 decorative bowls; camping gear out the ying yang; exercise equipment that actually can't even be assembled in such a small space...well, you get the idea. Their stuff has given them migraines. There is no floor space. Every available surface area is piled high with stuff. Jay's friends are on suicide watch based on the clutter alone.

Anyone need a fax machine? Porcelain doll? Doggie-sized leather coat trimmed in leopard print? Folding lawn chairs? 25 leis? Wedding dress? PS2? Please?