Monday, March 31, 2008

How I Am.

Every morning I wake up with butterflies; I've become unpredictable even to myself.

It's exhilarating, really, to feel like you've been reinvented, like you've changed in some fundamental way. It also makes me nervous to not know what each day will bring, not know what exactly I am capable of, but pushing myself to test those boundaries, feeling excited because anything can happen. Anything.

I've had moments. I had one at the club the other night - standing half naked outside at 2am, waiting for a cab when some guy peels the shirt right off my breast (it was soaked with beer and came away slowly, reluctantly) just to see if I was cold - and you know what I did? I laughed at him. I laughed right in his face, because really, who is this girl, what life am I living? Is this even real? Shouldn't it be illegal to have this much fun?

Have you ever woken up with a hickey and not really known who gave it to you, or if it was even a girl or a guy?

Yeah, me too.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Race Against Toronto

At the same time that Jason and I were split up but trying not to be, we also took up running. Perhaps I should have read more into the symbolic meaning of it than I did at the time, but I was probably too busy trying to outrun my own shadow to notice. When I would visit his crappy place out in the suburbs, we'd run past people's perfectly clipped lawns and their yappy little dogs, and the tricycles left outside, and the newspapers unretrieved at the end of driveways and cars parked crookedly alongside curbs. When he would visit my crappy place in the city, suddenly running wasn't just a way to be done working out faster than if I'd walked, it was fun. It was interesting. It was addictive.

It has led me to confirm a longstanding suspicion: the best part about Toronto is the sidewalks.

I'm not a fast runner. I'm not a graceful runner. There is nothing easy or effortless about it. I am awkward, and panty, and my feet look funny in running shoes as opposed to high heels, but damn if I don't get some crazy satisfaction out of it anyway.

I love weaving through the morning rush, the expensive people swinging their expensive briefcases, juggling their expensive latt├ęs while trying not to scuff their expensive tassled loafers.

I love the gritty feel of the pockmarked concrete slabs; I love evading the wads of still-sticky gum; I love the stupid, gutsy pigeons who don't have the good sense to fly away when something comes careening towards them; I love the splatter of a ketchup packet that has already exploded under someone else's heel.

I love the blank stares of the people who are sitting on stools on the other side of the Starbucks' window, clutching at their morning caffeine with equal amounts of hope and disgust.

I love Albert, the homeless guy who sits on a milk crate cajoling coins out of pockets by offering a belated play-by-play of last night's game.

I love darting around the obstacles: the graffiti-ed mailbox, expired parking metres, signs begging me to come in for a perm and half off foil highlights, window shoppers transfixed by the nudes hanging in the gallery, street vendors and their questionable wares, strange-smelling hot dog carts, jittery wild-eyed junkies looking for their next fix, bored looking people on cell phones waiting for their dogs to find the ideal spot to take a leak.

I love the sound of impatient horns and cabbies rolling down their windows to shout invectives, the familiar strumming of the guy who earns his paycheque one dollar at a time deposited directly into his guitar case instead of his bank account, the blaring honk of the bully buses, the kind beeping of pedestrian crosswalk, the weird hum of a thousand ipods singing into two thousand ears, the scrape of reluctant feet dragging sleepy bodies closer toward office buildings.

I love winking at people as I pass them by. I love the people who smile at me. I love the people who raise their eyebrows in greeting. I love when people half-wave from the other side of the street, because the blur of my purple stretch capris looks a little too much like their friends', and then their sheepish smile when they realize that I am just another stranger out for a jaunt.

I love waiting at the corner for the red hand to turn into the white walking man who tells me it's safe to cross, even though in Toronto it's never safe to cross. I love the dedicated runners who don't wait idly, but hop from one foot to another or jog sillily in place, doing anything to keep that heart rate up. I love that you can always tell a serious runner by their backwards fanny pack, as if running makes fanny packs acceptable (it doesn't).

I love choosing a marker that's a few meters away, and closing my eyes, and running towards it blindly. I love it when I make it there unscathed, and I run extra hard to celebrate. I love it when I overestimate or underestimate my mark and I run extra hard to make up for it. I love it when I smack right into someone, and I giggle but don't stop as I yell my insincere apology while running extra hard to get away from my embarrassment.

I love seeing the same people as I saw yesterday. I love seeing new people that I have never seen before and never will again. I love the achy feeling in my thighs and the sexy bulge of my calves. I love the bobbing of my ponytail and the way my breath sounds inside my head. I love stretching in the elevator on my way down and gasping for breath as I run the last 6 flights up.

I love having an excuse to buy those cute little ankle socks. I love ordering poutine without a side of guilt because I had a damn good run this morning. I love breaking a sweat before 9am. I love taking up a new hobby that is so unJaylike that even I am completely baffled. I love the feel of Toronto as it unfolds in front of me, and behind me. I love how people part when they hear me coming, how they shuffle to the side and nod slightly as I glide past. I love you best, Toronto, when we're both going full tilt at an impressive pace.

Monday, March 24, 2008

What, you don't like veal?

This is what he asked me, straight-faced.

What, you don't like veal?

He seemed almost incredulous that I might be turning down such a fine delicacy. The veal he was referring to was of course himself, he being a young pup who didn't mind pointing it out to this old bitch.

Veal.

Yes, I have reached that stage in my life. I'm not a sexy heifer anymore. I'm an old cow. An udderlicious cow, but still.

Moooo.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy

If weekends had themes, that would be mine.



I love how on Friday afternoon, I'm sitting at my desk at work smugly thinking about what a good girl I'm going to be this weekend, how I'm going to be productive for once, not sleep half the day and then party all night, but actually catch up on the laundry and stock the fridge with leafy green things and finally crack open that scrapbook that I got for Christmas 2003.



And that fantasy lasts until the clock strikes 5, and I'm out the door and hopping into the back of someone's pick up, headed for trouble instead of for home. I get half baked, then fully baked, and then everything goes to hell, straight to hell, not even a stopover in slightly-naughty-but-still redeemable land. Damn.

You have to take an awful lot of cubicle-naps to atone for all the sleep-debt accrued during wild & crazy weekends, but the thing about the work week is, it's so fucking short! No matter how many times you manage to curl up under your desk, you're never fully recovered from the last weekend before the next one hits you square in kisser! I know that people don't often argue on this side of the fence, but from where I'm sitting, it seems to be true.

I love Mondays, but the truth is, when you're sitting there with your forehead resting on a pile of paperwork, one eye mercifully closed while the other one watches the clock (and it's not quite 10am), and your head pounds from the remnants of the juiced-up-techno version of a song that was never quite good to begin with but still got an awful lot of play at the bar on Saturday night and you're picking at the rub-on not-so-temporary tattoo from the grog-fuelled pirate party you attended on Sunday but you're already planning Thursday night's drunk run while not quite ruling out the possibility of Monday night festivities because honest to blog, if you survive this day, you'll deserve a drink or 8 - well, that's when you know that something along the way got effed up.

The 5 day work week is just not natural, and the idea of a mere 2-day weekend is just absurd. Weekends are so laughably abbreviated that you absolutely must do your best to squeeze every last drop of potential fun out of them (sometimes to your own detriment, and certainly to your liver's), which leaves you with no time at all for the resting, which is the key to not dying, so I'm told. By the time Monday rolls around, I'm thankful to go to work for 8 solid hours of not-partying, even if I have to chug several "breakfasts of champions" (Special K and Redbull) to get me there.

Oh, I bitch, but the truth is, once I get over the initial shock that fluorescent lighting and water coolers inevitably give, I start to get in the zone pretty quickly, and by 2pm on Monday, my knee starts jiggling under my desk, bopping around, looking for a beat that it's just not getting from my coworker's top-40 radio habit. And this week, god bless it, is even worse (or better, depending how dehydrated you are) than usual: Monday is St Pat's, so of course there will be going-outage, and since we're off on Friday for some vague Jesusy reason, Thursday night becomes the default "fuck yeah we're done work!" night, leaving only 3 hangover-hazy days in the middle for gossip, scheming, and of course - dialysis.

Oh, I like to complain, but obviously I'm enjoying myself. Like, really enjoying myself. 2008, after all, is to be Year of Me. And after the suckage that was 2007, at least for the most part (otherwise known as Year of Complete Horseshit), I think I deserve it.

Rum and coke tastes an awful lot like freedom.
Ahhhhhhhhhh.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Things I learned in the storm.

1. It's surprisingly possible to declare a pajama day at your local seedy bar.

2. When drinking rye and coke by the pitcherful, the glass is totally negligible if you have 2 straws.

3. Inappropriate and wildly imaginative conversation should only be interrupted to belt out classic rock lyrics that may or may not be playing in the background at the time.

4. It is not compulsory to kiss members of the same sex while flirting with members of both sexes, but it's pretty damn fun.

5. While sitting on the public pot, it is totally acceptable to open the door while your pants are still around your ankles if (and only if) there is a nipple ring on display. Points off for breaking the seal.

6. Boys do not forget an offer of three-way sex no matter how drunk they (or you) were.

7. After being accused of being "a retarded amount of fun", you will of course feel compelled to repeat the performance again the next night, regardless of the severe weather warning issued by Environment Canada.

8. There is no excuse for wearing sling back heels (no socks, obviously) on a night when over 50 cm of snow is expected.

9. No matter how much hash you smoke, your toes will still be cold. However, the fact that your friend appears to be wearing an umbrella-hat is happily distracting.

10. No matter how many times you hear "only an idiot would go out in this weather", the enticement of a crowded dancefloor and a bad Britney Spears remix will prove impossible to resist.

11. Cabbies, on the other hand, will heed the warning, and taxis will be completely unavailable.

12. Indeed, when you decide to hoof it for lack of better options, the city streets will be deserted (from what you can tell, anyway, it being "white out conditions" out there). No cabs, no public transportation, no cars whatsoever, aside from the ones sitting crookedly in ditches, or buried under several feet of hard-packed snow.

13. No matter how close to the yellow line in the middle of the road you walk, the snow drifts will still be up to your crotch.

14. Luckily, sex on the beach cures all.

15. I mentioned about the menage a trois, right? Turns out, it still buys you drinks the next day.

16. As implausible as it sounds, a one-man acoustic version of Billy Jean is pretty damn rockin.

17. There comes a point, a line gets crossed, when you just know that on Monday morning you won't be able to look at these people in quite the same way, but what the hell, life is fun, and this is what it's all about.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Doncha wish your blog was hot like mine?

It was the post that almost was.

The post that definitely was, but then disappeared.

The post that I wrote, and that was amazing, truly brilliant, would have had you nodding sagely at times, misty-eyed at others, and enlightened in the end.

You know that post? That post that you would have posted if only the blog monster hadn't eaten it? The kind of post that keeps you posting, that inspires postage in others, that ranks among the posts hall of fame, the post that other posts hold up as god of all posts for worship, admiration, and envy. Lots and lots of envy.

Oh the post, what a post it was. It never dithered. It was witty. It used peppery language that had us all cracking those half-smiles that we feel foolish for flashing at our computer screens. It was sweet, not sentimental, but with an edge. An edge like Hunter S. Thompson but with a dollop of Saul Bellow on top. And Maya Angelou sprinkles. And a side of David Sedaris, with 2 spoons for sharing.

And now it's gone, and you'll have to take my word for its luminescence. It was a post fit for a goat, but now it's floating around in the internet, unclaimed and unloved, like a lost mitten that will live a hauntingly useless life in a lost and found box, never to warm fingers again.

Now you'll never know the stellar week I've had, or the shady characters I met on a slippery sidewalk while waiting for the light to turn green, or why my driveway has suddenly turned into a meat market. You'll never know the stunning conclusion I've come to in the great "should I\could I fuck a younger (!) man" debate, or how I got those funny bruises on the backs of my knees, or how I really feel about white belts. And how will you sleep at night never knowing where that mysterious itch came from, or how I came to celebrate "Sausage Fest 2008" on an ordinary Wednesday just like any other, or whether I am likely to find a dozen pirate hats in time (in time for what?!).

Yup. It's rough. I wouldn't want to be in your shoes right now. There's been an awful lot of exceedingly interesting things happening around here, and now you'll never know....but you can always guess. :)

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Stream-of-Mostly-Consciousness

Baby, you're drunk, and acting tough.

I'm not drunk. I'm happy.

Oh?

Happy. You know, that feeling you get when you've been dancing beside the speaker all night, and the only sense you have left is the sight of your own blonde tresses as they swish on by, even the pain from your slut shoes defleshing your heels is dim, the music is good, no the music is better than good because at least five times you've clapped with glee and squealed Ooooh, my favourite, and you're high on the sugar from your rum and cokes like this whole night is just for you, like maybe everyone in the bar came out just so that you could smile your smile and do your thing, and maybe it's not true but maybe it doesn't even matter because you're out there enjoying it all, lost in the twinkling coloured lights, taking the phone numbers to avoid the argument but dismissing them all with a saucy wink because you already know who you want to go home with tonight and your secret smile is because you're wearing the perfect panties underneath and he'll be pleased, but for now you're on the floor feeling the beat, touching yourself, basking in the heat, letting other bodies brush your own and sparking from all the electricity that surrounds you like the energy is communal tonight and everyone is sharing more than a dance, and you can feel their desires almost as palpably as you can feel the pendant around your neck, swaying like you do, catching in your cleavage, and the universe narrows to just this sweaty space, nothing else matters, tonight is the night.

And the fact that you've been bleeding in your shoes for the past 4 hours?

Details. Just details.
Now slam my back against the wall and kiss me like you mean it.