The Good Samaritan that never was

I have always prided myself at being AWESOME at life. Part of being AWESOME at life was seeking out opportunities to help the less fortunate. Like one time, I gave my gloves to some homeless guy. 

Another time, I gave my seat to a super pregnant lady. The look of gratefulness she gave me was enough to melt the heart of God himself.  

And another time, I was at Shopper’s Drug Mart, I almost bought a $5.00 gift card for the next person in line from me. I refrained when I saw that it was some old geezer buying Lottery tickets. Pfft…screw that! I may be awesome at life, but I’m no enabler. 

Anyways. 

The problem with this whole act of kindness thing that I’m mildly obsessed with is that there’s always an air of pride that’s dancing along with that.  I never do things for people if:

- It’s inconvenient for me.

- They’re crazy.

- If they clearly look distressed but also look like they are totally capable of lunging for the carotid with a machete and the kind of enthusiasm that only comes with being a repeat victim of the Toronto Transit Commission. 

Most people who need help in Toronto fit one or all of the above categories. 

And then I met Ivan last week. 

I was going to buy some groceries on my way home from work when a rotund little man with a cane and two heaping grocery bags was walking towards me. He was talking to himself no less. 

“EXCUSE ME, KIND LADY! Will you help me with my bags?” He was looking straight at me. 

He fit almost all of my above stated categories. Although, he wouldn’t be able to run fast enough after me with a machete with those bags so I obliged. 

“Sure, I’ll help you!”

“Thank you, kind lady. My name is Ivan and you’re a kind lady!!”  Of course I’m a kind lady, Ivan!

Turned out he not only needed help with his bags, he also needed a shoulder to lean on. Literally. He almost fell off on one side. When you’re not strong and you need a friend, you lean on Karen. 

To say his bags were heavy was an understatement.  If his bags were a food group, they’d be trans fat. If his bags were a feeling, they’d be a mixture of guilt and daddy issues. If his bags were a mustache, they’d be Tom Selleck.

The point is, I couldn’t actually carry his bags and have him lean all of his 250lbs on me at the same time. The only thing that kept me going was pride that I was doing something good. 

Ivan was a character. If the personalities of Walter Matthau and Uncle Leo from Seinfield had a love child, it would grow up to become Ivan’s personality. 

He shouted at everyone on the streets about what a kind lady I was. When he found out  I was Catholic, he yelled some more about how protestants are fools.

“NOT the place or time, Ivan”, I scolded back at him. 

“Whatever you say, kind lady”

Luckily, the City of Toronto is God’s own green earth of polite, tree-hugging atheists. All I got were stares of unadulterated sympathy. 

The subway station, where Ivan wanted to get to was three minutes away. Twenty minutes later, we were still crossing the street and Ivan was still bitching about protestants. 

He finally noticed that I was struggling with the bags and just stopped and asked, “Oh kind sister, would like some help with those bags?”

I stared at him dumbly.”No Ivan, you need help with these bags, remember?”

“Oh you’re such a kind lady”. 

By the time we got down the stairs to the subway platform, Ivan had already yelled at every passerby about how kind I was and I, in turn, was ready to fling his bags onto the subway tracks. 

The train finally came by. Ivan wrote his number on my hand and insisted I call him because he liked kind ladies. 

Before he left he yelled one last time, “WAIT! I have something important to tell you”

He said this with all the self-importance an enlightened Siddhartha could muster. Maybe this was the moment when I was to find out that he’s really a wise man and he’ll give me a piece of profound wisdom that would make sense all of that had just happened. 

“Remember, kind lady”, he said. “When you go grocery shopping today, stock up on juice. JUICE IS ON SALE!!”

Fuck you, Ivan. And the subway door closed. 

Moral of the story: Its okay to have a little pride when you seek to help people. There’s nothing wrong with being proud of doing the right thing. But its better to have humility. Because without it, nothing you do to help people will ever make sense to you.

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PS: Thank you all for such a warm welcome back. It feels good to see all of you again :)

The New Year of First World Problems

This year I spared myself the pain of failure of New Years Resolutions by cancelling them out totally. This is demonstrated by the fact that this post was started in January as a “New Years Resolution post“ but is only successfully published in March, Why? Because the pressure to follow through with blog posts  is WAY less.

For the past couple of years, I’ve had some hipster feelings about New Years Resolutions. People tell me all about theirs and I just sink into an emo abyss. New Year Resolutions are soooo oppressively mainstream. I came to this conclusion when I miserably failed at my lenten resolution a few years ago. If I didn`t have the willpower to keep my daily coffee intake to under three dessert bowl sized coffee mugs for 40 days, why cause more self-inflicted low self-esteem?

In my last post, I told the world that I became one of Canada newest landed immigrants. I’d like to think that the patriotic honeymoon phase will last eternally but the truth is, my newly minted Canadian status has been lacking some of its intial lustre lately.

Hardly two months after I became a resident and all the hoopla of immigration died out and my all friends stopped offering to take me for “celebratory coffees”, reality set in that my life hadn’t changed one bit.

The weather still displays asshole-like behavior, I still ride the same buses and Rob Ford is still the mayor of Toronto.

Mayor Rob Ford

Mayor Rob Ford

But I feel a sense of pride to be able to call myself a Torontonian even if the word ‘Torontonian’ sounds like a name given to baby T-Rex.

One of the things that became very apparent now that I’m an official resident was an overwhelming realisation of first world problems. They were always there and they`re now significantly magnfied since I don`t have third world problems to deal with anymore.

Here are some of the worst first-world problems I`ve had to deal with. Read it and weep for me.

1) The “high“ setting on my hair dryer is not high enough.

How hard is it for Sears to carry a brand of  hair dryers whose high setting doesn’t feel like a pair of butterfly wings fluttering around a lotus flower in the morning sunshine? Now I have to wait for this shitbox piece of crap to burn out until the next useless Conair I buy on sale. Life is pain.

2) The inability to cut avocadoes.

Anybody else think Canadian winters are the worst time to buy avocadoes? Those little bitches are hard as nails to cut up. Anyways, being the overflowing wellspring of patience that I am, I thought of a genius plan of quickening the avocado ripening process. Put the avocadoes in a brown paper bag and use my useless hair dryer to blow bursts of warm air in the bag. Fruit likes warmth right? Is avocado a fruit? My parents, past science teachers or anyone with two and half functionally firing neurons would have probably sighed with hopelessness at the sight of someone blowdrying avocadoes. No guacamole till April. Life is pain.

3) When your lipstick is done perfectly and you have to Roll up the Rim:

Every year, Canadian coffee chain Tim Hortons contributes significantly to seasonal depressive disorder by inflicting the ever popular “Roll up the Rim” upon overcaffienated Canadians. Throngs of people line up at Timmies every morning, noon and night for their double-doubles with excitement and anticipation at the prospect of biting off the rim of a paper cup to see just how much of nothing they won. It’s like the shittiest orgasm in the history of life. You keep building up to the promise of something sweet ( a free stale carrot muffin) only to have all of it crashing to pieces around you when you get nothing. Because there is nothing like the words “Sorry, please try again“ to pep up your mojo.

No stale muffin, no lipstick and no orgasm. Life is pain.

Here’s one my co-worker Kat ranted about the other day:

4) When you go home after a long day at work and your mother has dinner waiting for you but it`s something that you don`t like:

“I absolutely HATE it when I go home exhausted from work , and my mother has dinner waiting for me and it`s cauliflower. Yuck. So what if I`m still living at home? At 27. Rent free. ” Life is pain.

And for the grand finale…

5) When the hardest life choice you have to make comes down to deciding beween a coffee maker and toilet paper:

My coffee maker died right around  the time I ran out of toilet paper and I felt the world closing in on me. Since I do not own a vehicle, I could only carry home one of the bulky items from the store…toilet paper or a coffee maker. It is important to note that this impossible decision took two whole days to make, during which I exhausted all my emergency TP.

In the end, toilet paper won. Shit happens. For everything else, there’s Starbucks. I came up with a plan that was winning at life: I ordered the coffee maker online so it would be delivered straight to my house and went out to Shoppers Drug Mart to buy toilet paper. I wouldn’t have to lug home a large coffee maker box and toilet paper was light enough for my delicate frame to lug home.

But of course this first world universe had to shit on my parade. The very large bulk supply of toilet paper that I brought home that night turned out to be all paper towels instead (because I clearly cannot read labels). Three days later, I found a note on my front door telling me that Purolator dropped by to deliver my coffee-maker but since I wasn`t home to sign for it, I would have to go all the way to the post office and pick it up my myself.

I took that note and walked in the cold to the post office to pick up my brand new coffee-maker.

Now I have limp hair, seven rock-hard avocadoes, wasted lipstick, back pain from lugging home a coffee maker, frost bite, and a shit load of paper towels. But life is definitely less pain when you have coffee and toilet paper.  

What are some of your first world problems? 

Unbreak my Umbrella

As per usual, I have taken one of my increasingly frequent leave of absences from WordPress. But I decided to come back, red-faced with shame, with this little cartoon strip. In case you were wondering how my patriotic honeymoon with Canada has been going, wonder about this no more. 

This has been the story of my (Canadian) life since you last heard from me. As you can see, in less than three months, I have become an expert Canada-complainer, diving enthusiastically into the realm of complaining through badly drawn cartoons even. 

This particular event happened yesterday:

pic1

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And that’s what I have been up to since December.  

But I’m back! :D

Friday Chronicles: Five things to be thankful for this Thanksgiving

I know I’m a little late, but better late than pregnant…right? (Right Breezyk?)

Welcome again to this week’s edition of The Chronicles. I’ve been seeing a lot of Thanksgiving related posts these days and obviously The Chronicles will take a piece of that pumpkin pie. If the fact that it’s Friday/Saturday doesn’t already bring a lone tear of gratitude to your eye, then I don’t know what will.

Sometimes even when life is good, we may find it hard to be thankful. Our first-world problems, although trivial can really be a cause of stress. The Friday Chronicles understands, and ensures that this won’t be a post trying to make you feel guilty about not being more thankful for the shit loads of things you already have.

And so without further ado, let’s begin!…

1) Kate Middleton  returns clothing gift from Kim Kardashian:

This is by far my most favorite story of the week and was what convinced me that maybe this world is not down in a sewer just yet. The Duchess, in this very strong rumor, allegedly returned some clothing items that Kinky Kardashian sent her in hopes of publicizing her klothing line, Kardashian Kollection.

Just a few months ago, Kardashian’s krush Kanye urged his hoochie mama to be more poised and sophisticated like Kate. Well, Oprah and Disney may tell you that “anything is possible”, but the truth is that some things are REALLY not.  

Red Carpet soul sisters

2) Man buys Toronto Maple Leafs toilet for $5,300.00:

There are two things Toronto is really not good for- the Queen Street streetcar, which is hailed as an urban myth and the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto’s shiteous hockey team. Over the past few years, Leafs die-hard fans(because you’re either a die-hard or completely indifferent)  have been paying anywhere between $117-$300.00 to watch the Leafs continuously lose and go home in bitter tears.

Obviously, all the disappointment over the years wasn’t enough to sway Toronto native Jim Vigmond, who just paid $5,300.00 to literally take the ultimate crap from the Leafs. The expensive potty is one among many Leaf items that was auctioned off to crazy fans. The Maple Leaf Gardens, where the Leafs and their toilet were orginally based, moved and now is converted into a grocery store, hence leaving some of their random shit for the die-hards.

A toilet

3) Ukrainian priest slaps Pussy Riot sympathizers with censer:

Continuing with this shit-for-brains theme this week, a bunch of guys with stockings on their heads stormed into a Ukrainian Orthodox church to perform a terrible version of the already terrible version of the feminist group’s “Punk Prayer”. But the priest was having none of this nonsense. The old guy proceeded to smack these crackpots with a censer, after which, he handed them over to the police.

Just in case you don’t know what a censer is (I didn’t), it’s the vessel used to dispense incense. Which makes the mental picture of an old man swinging this at the stocking-clad members of Penis Protest even funnier.

A censer is a vessel used for dispensing incense and knocking sense into dumbasses

4) Israel-Palestine photo goes viral:

In the midst of all the craziness that has been going on in Gaza, two regular guys in Manhattan posted this photo with a touching message.

Picture taken from The Huffington Post

While these guys are thinking about their people dying in war in a far off land on Thanksgiving, I’m thinking about what’s going on right here at home. My photo didn’t get nearly as much attention:

Story of my life

5) Last installment of the Twilight series in theatres now:

For the pièce de résistance, I hereby leave you with the last news item for this week. Twilight is back on the big screen. Control your excitment, folks. 

Whether you are a Twi-lover or a Twi-hater, I have found you all the perfect youtube video celebrating the end of this God-forsaken franchise. 

And with that, we complete this week’s edition of the Friday Chronicles. Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends! 

Don’t forget to participate in this fun poll:

The Writing Maladies of a Sensitive Blogger

For the most of this past summer I was MIA on WordPress. Believe it or not, the sentence “this is me showing up at the page” was all I could come up with. I would sit in front of this blank screen with the blinking cursor silently mocking my failure at stringing along a few decent paragraphs.

Eventually, I couldn’t bear to see it flashing before me, closed the tab and avoided WordPress altogether for the better part of the summer.

Why am I telling you this? Maybe I’m just looking for sympathy. Or maybe I just want to know that someone else out there can relate.

I started this blog in 2009. Three years ago, I was a very different person. Well actually, I was the same person but I saw things very differently. I started my blog for the same reason many of us start blogs. The feeling of an escape from life, or perhaps the need to have something new that is utterly and completely in your control. In my case, it was both.

The blank page was my best friend. I could fill it up with whatever I wanted. Life was a mess, but the page was clean.

I didn’t really care who read the blog. I loved to write. Writing made me happy, and my happiness had nothing to do with how many views my posts received. I learnt that I was my biggest critic. If I liked my post, then it didn’t matter who else did. If I hated it, all the positive feedback in the world wouldn’t be able to convince me I did a good job. 

And then something happened. Call it time or call it Freshly Pressed. Let’s call it Freshly Pressed. 

Freshly Pressed was probably the best and the worst thing that ever happened to this blog and its writer. Freshly Pressed gives you about 48 hours of fame and instant gratification, a window in which the world loves you. Followers and likes and comments rain down like confetti on the celebration of your blog’s success.

If you are a blogger who was Freshly Pressed, you may be able to attest that things change after that. For me, it stopped being about the love of writing and expression. It was now all about the audience. This is not to say Freshly Pressed was a bad thing. I ran into so many of you because of it, and for that I am grateful. 

But the pressure that I put on myself was definitely on. I placed my creative self-esteem in the hands of audience feedback. And solely positive feedback. 

If I didn’t think someone would like what I was going to write about, the post either landed in my saved documents or in the trash. As a result, hundreds of posts were aborted out of fear of disinterest, fear of negative feedback or maybe the worst- fear of complete indifference.

I seemed to have forgotten why I started this blog. The main reason this blog even exists is so that I don’t take myself too seriously. Ironically, I’ve never taken myself more seriously. For example, take this very post. It took me two weeks to write it and an hour and a half to come up with a title.

Creative process of normal people:

…whatever your definition of normal is

My version of the creative process:

I make this look more complicated than it really is

Of course, I cannot blame my blogging blocks entirely on Freshly Pressed. A lot of it was also personal issues that added to the mix. 

While I may have been absent from blogging, I wasn’t completely absent from reading some of the blogs I`m subscribed to. Mainly, you guys. This is where I talk about why Freshly Pressed was the best thing that ever happened to me. Take this any way you want to (actually, please take this in a good way) but I envied you all.

You all are fearless writers. (Yes, you!)  Whether it’s a post about finding roses in the garbage disposal, or a post about getting mad when people call you by stupid nicknames, or a post about the joy of getting voting stickers, you guys taught me that I shouldn’t care too much about other people’s opinions. Even if I do, it shouldn’t stop me from writing. You all have the metaphorical pair of blogger balls that I really need to start growing.

In many ways, they both feel the same.

Eventually of course, my summer pity party ended and I started writing again. Even if it was a post about talking to my blender, it had to be written if only to break the cycle of fear of not being liked. This post has no fancy play on words, no clever puns (except the blogger balls one, which is really a metaphor and not that funny). It`s the first time in a long time that I’m not trying desperately hard to impress everyone.

If you have gotten to the end of this post- Thank You. I may have spent a whole post talking about how you are indirectly the cause of my writing anxiety, but you are also directly the cause of infinite encouragement and inspiration. I could write another 3000 words about how awesome you guys are but I won`t because I’d like to stop being such a sap and get back to my usual no-nonsense sarcastic self. 

To all of you awesome WordPress bloggers, seeing you guys regularly on my reader has inspired me by kicking my ass into gear. Now I’d like to know your secrets: Why did you start blogging? How do you get past social acceptance fears? Does blogging ever feel like a job?

Friday Chronicles: Diabetes and Moose poop

After a long hiatus from my weekly commentary on the idiotic behavior of idiots, the Friday Chronicles is back for another round of cheap laughs at the latest and not-so-greatest weekly news items!

I’m aware of just how long it has been. By now, some of you may have  acquired spouses, allergies, illegitimate children, book deals or, if you live my life, absolutely nothing. But no matter how crazy or not crazy your life has gotten since the last lifetime, there’s always time for some LOLZ for your Friday.

Politics seems to be the theme of this month. I vowed never to dabble too much on politics on my blog, and I’m not about to break that for the sake for the Friday Chronicles. But every once in a while, politics makes for some good humor.

1) Obama wins the presidential election 2012:

This news is stale and unless you’ve had your head stuck in a tin pipe in some sewer on Jupiter for the last two weeks, I really don’t think I’ve ruined the ending for anyone. The Republicans are now prepping for the end of the world, and the Democrats are advocating for women’s rights to choose between a binder and large manila envelope. But the actual news item that I’m trying to get at by using this as a leeway is:

2) Republicans threaten to move to Canada after Mittens Romney’s defeat in the 2012 presidential elections:

Time to bust out the Say Whaaaa face….

All these fools be so ridiculous that I can’t even eat my fried chicken in peace anymore.

This was clearly the highlight of the elections for me. In a rush of NObama frenzy, disgruntled and fed-up  Republicans expressed some adamant wishes to move to Canada, the one country that embodies the Republican nightmare: shiteous taxes, government funded healthcare, zero abortion laws, zero gun policy, gay marriage, jungle-is-massive lineups at Tim Hortons, Parti Quebecois…

Here are some clearly agitated Repub tweeters expressing their views:

And my personal favorite:

I love how the media uses the word “threaten”. Because in addition to the global warming panic-attacks Canadians experience whenever the weather is humid, and the by-law stating that all Canadians must spend at least 35.8 minutes of their day holding the door open for strangers, we now have to worry about disgruntled Republicans storming into our igloos and making fun of our poorly designed plastic money. 

As terrifying as these issues sound though, nothing compares to the biggest obstacle Republicans will have to face when they move here: switching to the metric system. 

Come on, Republican America! Is this what you really want?

“I’m telling ya, Barry O! All we need is a moose and a gun loaded with Timbits and we can rule the WORLDDDD!”
Diabetes and moose poop- Canada’s line of defense in case of foreign attack

(Quick Glossary: Timbits= Canada’s gift to the world= lethal balls of sugar from Tim Hortons)

If you are really hard pressed for a place to move to, here’s a suggestion:

3) Kuwait lands in the Guiness Book of Record for the largest firework display of life:

Kuwait, which is a relatively unknown little oil-rich country in the Middle East (and NOT a small farming town in Manitoba), made it into the Guiness Book of records last week. Why you ask? Because they just spent 15 million dollars on a firework display to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their constitution.  Take that, Fourth of July! Don’t even TRY to top this. Because Kuwait will just sneeze out a few million barrels of oil and buy your whole country.  

Here are some images:

You can click on the title of this news piece to see more of these pictures

I tried to think of some smartass comparisons but I keep getting distracted by all these lights. And after having lived in Kuwait my whole life, the only way I can describe this is by the image of Kim Kardashian: Hot, flashy and so ridiculously over the top. 

4) Facebook creates new “Couples Pages”:

Singles Unite! We now have another reason to drink vodka and write blog posts about talking to our kitchen appliances like they are real people. Facebook announced that they will now be collating all the information about you and anyone you have listed as being “in a relationship” with into your own couple’s page. And as with most new Facebook features, you have no say in this. 

It’s just like Facebook to take away any last shred of joy that one experiences when, after hours of stalking, manages to overcome all the obstacles of privacy settings and find personal information about their exes. But of course, I found an upside to all this. Less time for stalking can only mean more time to correct everyone’s grammar. 

And finally,

In my search for news stories this week, I found out that my husband celebrated his 32nd birthday on November 12th! 

5) Happy Birthday, Ryan Gosling!

And CLEARLY he doesn’t mind that I actually had no idea when his birthday was, as evidenced by what he said to me:

YES.
(www.effyeahryangosling.tumblr.com)

And with that, we complete this week’s political, hormonal, self-deprecating round up of “news”. Join me next time for another round my social commentary on the wonderfully weird things making the news. Happy Friday and have a great weekend, comrades!

How to be thankful on Thanksgiving

It seems common belief that holidays of any sort can be hard on singles. Christmas time, the season of nauseating radio play of basterdized Christmas carols and long line-ups for the naked scanner at the airport, is usually tainted by Aunt Bossy at the annual family stroke-inducing holiday dinner.

Everyone has an Aunt Bossy. She’s the one with the candy cane earrings, a pearl necklace and a brooch that says “Jesus is the reason for the season”.  She may or may not be biologically related to you. But this doesn’t stop her from closelining you on your way to the cookie table with well-meaning insults.

“Why are you so thin, Karen? Are you on a diet? Your mother tells me you joined a dating site”, 

“Do you know your cousin Melissa just got engaged to that engineer from Winnipeg? Remember him? You know he has a brother? You’re not getting any younger”

Whether its Christmas, Easter, Sabbath, Black history month or the zombie apocalypse, Aunty Bossy’s solution to the question of the Universe is: find a man as fast as you can.
 
Of course you could shut her up by yelling ‘F*ck cousin Melissa and her goddamn engineer fiance!” promptly causing major family drama, a demotion from cousin Melissa’s wedding party and the lifelong family anecdote of ‘that time when Karen lost her cookies…just 3 seconds before she was about to stuff her empty soul with butterscotch.’
 
But of course you won’t do that. What you probably will do is sit there silently hoping cousin Melissa chokes on her half-price Easter chocolate.
 

Aunt Bossy.This is also pretty much what I will look like 30 years from now.

Apart from Easter and Christmas, there are also other obscure holidays like Labor Day, New Year’s, and if you live in Canada- Family Day and Victoria Day. Not to mention birthdays, baptisms, summer bbqs, anniversaries and of course Thanksgiving.

But for the purpose of this post not becoming any more of one of those angry, woe-is-me, single girl rants, let’s just focus on the real issue at hand: giving thanks on Thanksgiving.

In Canada, thanksgiving is celebrated a little over a month before our American neighbours. Nobody knows the reason for this; it may have something to do with the fact that every year, Canadians need a whole day in the fall to recover from the shock and panic of Environment Canada’s annual prediction that it will be a cold winter.

Thanksgiving, which is predominantly a North American holiday, was never a tradition I grew up with. My family was the kind that showed love by making dry sarcastic comments at each other’s expense. Christmas and birthday gifts were never exchanged and nobody sat around, held hands and talked about their feelings.

Usually I’m just grateful that Thanksgiving exists so I can have a day off. But after living in Canada for the past 8 years, I’m inclined to believe that North American culture dishes out public holidays in order to give malls silly excuses to hold sales so that single people with no families have something to do on their day off.

The only man I’ll ever need is Michael Kors

 But this year I wanted Thanksgiving to be different. None of this feeling sorry for myself bullshit. It was time to go back to the real reason for the holiday: Being grateful for everything.

As it so happened (like it often does), I had no real Thanksgiving plans with family or friends. But that didn’t stop me from starting my own Thanksgiving tradition: Having one day when I truly allow myself to see just how good I have it.

I thought I would go all out and have a hearty turkey dinner for one. But standing in front of the freezer section at my grocery store, I had to come to the acceptance that cooking a turkey, which weighed about the same as a three-year-old child, was perhaps not the most original or feasible idea for a gal like me.

I settled for a small chicken instead.

I’ve never cooked a full roast chicken in my life. The whole day was spent fussing over this damn bird that I had no time to think about all the things us fickle singletons fret about during holidays. To stuff…or not to stuff? (Gordon Ramsey says to pop in half a lemon wedge) How long do I preheat the oven? What if it turns out too dry? And what the hell does basting mean?

In end, I decided to go the heart attack route. No roast chicken can be dry if you cover it with 5lbs of butter and bacon stripes. And would you believe it…here are the results of a whole day’s worth of labor:

Just to drive the point further, that bread was fried in butter.

Never in my life had I ever created anything quite so fattening and delicious-looking. I sat down and said a prayer of thanksgiving. I gave thanks for the food, my life, my health, the fact that Immigratin Canada still hasn’t kicked me out of this country (just yet), the fact that I could still afford to eat a lard-laden meal without collapsing from a massive coronary (just yet), my family, my friends, and my future family, who I’m sure when they someday come along, will be thankful for the fact that there are no vegetables involved in this meal…and the few veggies there are are guiltily swimming in a tub of butter and bacon grease.

I truly had everything I needed this Thanksgiving. Even if Aunt Bossy thought otherwise.

And so this thanksgiving, whether you celebrate it today or a month and a half from now, may you always find something to be grateful for. And if you can’t, there’s always bacon.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of  you out there! :D

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Author’s Note: There were no turkeys, aunts, or cousin Melissas harmed in the making of this post. Last I heard cousin Melissa did end up marrying that putz from Winnipeg. Bitch.

Roots to roots: How hair trouble enkindled short-lived patriotic feelings

Today all of you are in for a treat. Not only have I decided to make one of my now exceedingly rare appearances to WordPress (cocky much to believe that this is a treat for anyone?), but I’m also going to give you a little glimpse into my Indian culture that I never bother bragging about to anyone.

If you are avid readers of Ms. Breezyk’s humourous blog, The Camel Life (if not, please stop reading this and click on that link first), then you would have known from one of her fairly recent posts that this hot chick seems to be having some hair trouble. Here, this is a photo of her woe:

Perfectly normal hair.

Do you agree that something needs to be done about those 4 ounces of dark mane on this loveable brunette head? No? Really? Good. Me neither. And I’m not just saying this because I have a not-so-secret girl crush on her. But regardless, I decided to step in and help her out with her hairy conundrum.

I suggested an old Indian hair remedy of dousing one’s hair with coconut oil. I’m not completely sure if this even works since I haven’t ever tried it. I hate the smell of coconut oil in my hair. Not to mention, the sight of your head looking greasier than a Middle Eastern oil well automatically renders you a social outcast. Between my unsucessful attempts at online dating and Breezy’s numerous cat photos, it is clear that times are tough.

Now is not the time for young, single gals like us to be walking man repellents. Our womanly inclination to over-analyze and obsess does that enough.

But back to coconut oil. Other Indians (and some “trusted” sites from Google) swear by it. And there is no reason to question my fellow (wo)men on this. We Indians are a hairy race. Someone must be doing something right (or wrong). So I told Breezy that if she gave me the time of day next week for another one of our wannabe hipster brunch dates, I would have a nice blue bottle of Parachute Coconut Oil (India’s finest) waiting for her. She agreed.

And so, off I set in my mission to help my friend. The task was quite simple. Buy Parachute Coconut Oil so we could turn this:

Smiley Breezy

to this:

Don’t joo get all up in ma weave!- Some hairy baby

Destination Little India, located in a small section of Gerrard Street in Toronto was a place I had only been to once before.

Now let me get something out of the way before I proceed. I am Indian, yes. However, my ties to my Indian roots go only so far as throughly enjoying Indian food. I don’t care for anyone’s useless unfavorable opinions about curry, I will down that shit like it has power to give life. Not only is curry the Indian word for deliciously delicious, it is also richly packed with antioxidants. True fact, all you avid inhalers of genetically modified blueberries!

Unfortunately, that’s as far as my emotional bond to my homeland goes. I think saris are horrible creations for midgets like me who need to be able to run from their stalkers without constantly tripping over 5 million meters of cloth. And let’s not speak of Bollywood movies. That’s a bitch fest that could go on for at least a week. Coincidently, that’s also how long a Bollywood movie lasts.  

I pondered over the love I don’t have for Indian things like saris and Bollywood movies and that one batshit crazy bitch who sings EVERY single Indian song in her high-pitched banshee voice that shatters the auditory senses of everyone around and their surrounding five postal codes.

Such is the nature of my love/hate (clearly, mostly hate) relationship with my country. And with this feeling, I slowly got off the streetcar to the instant olfactory explosion of fried everything, incense and curry dreams. It smelled like India, it looked like India and it sounded like India. Minus the pollution and stray animals.

Normally, this is the kind of scene that drives the point further home of how I had become too much of a spoilt North America city child. But at that moment in time, for reasons that elude me completely, I found myself wanting to stay.

Maybe it was the smell of curry that was at the level of amber alert for ambushing my clothes. Or maybe it was the guilt of being completely indifferent. Whatever it was, it drew me in and made me want to be here.

Perhaps the worst (or best?) part was when I found my legs uncontrollably walking into a sari shop. I audibly gasped at everything in there. Yards and yards of beautiful fabrics with beads and sequins and mirrors and handcrafted embroidery.

The Indian saleswoman obviously noticed my dumb tourist look and told me in Hindi that the sari I was looking at was on sale. Out of nowhere I started to bargain with her in Hindi. I didn’t even know I knew enough Hindi to string along a sentence without 97% of it being swear words.

I stood there in that store listening to music featuring the banshee voice and was surrounded by every colour in the rainbow.  I had a stupid grin on my face and an unexplainable feeling of pride.

This was my country. We have annoying music, we’re cheap enough to miraculously learn a language if it means we will get something half price, we have the best curry in the world and if our clothes are any indication of who we are then we have one of the most colourful, vibrant and happy cultures in the world. And for once, I was pretty freaking proud of that.

I would have taken some photos of all the sari stores I went to (yes, all of them. The patriotic feelings were too strong to resist). But I didn’t mostly due to signs like these posted everywhere.

I had easily spent an hour perusing every store and reminiscing  little things from my childhood. I finally made my way to the variety store and picked up one these suckers for Breezy:

Get ready for some hairy goodness!

Alas! All good things must come to an end and soon I was on the streetcar headed back into the city. I spent the entirety of the ride thinking about Little India like how one would think of a first date that they absolutely dreaded at first and yet went frighteningly well in the end.

And so Breezy, here is India’s beauty gift to you: A full head of luscious Kim Kardashian hair at the expense of being an occassional social leper.

As for the rest of you, don’t think I’ve forgotten you guys! I have an Indian beauty gift for everyone today (apart from the gift of myself) (HAHA.)

I hereby give you the recipe for the Gram Tumeric facial mask. Or as I would like to call it The Radiant Indian Bride Face Mask. (You fellas can do this too. No shame in being an Indian bride)

This mask is great for exfoliation, acne and dry skin. Pretty much covers everything annoying that could happen to your face before your big Indian wedding day…or a crappy Monday at the office.

The Radiant Indian Bride Face Mask:

3 tablespoons of gram flour. Gram flour is just the Indian way of saying Chickpea flour. You can find chickpea flour at most bulk food stores.

1.5 teaspoons of tumeric. Tumeric is an antiseptic and the key ingredient in making your face all glowly and radiant. Many believe tumeric is the next super drug that will cure cancer…which may be true. But it also stains like a bitch so don’t go apeshit with the tumeric.

You want to be a radiant Indian bride. Not a jaundiced troll.

2 tablespoons of almond oil. You can substitute with olive oil.

Milk. Pour in just enough to make this all into a thick paste.

Your freshly prepared homemade mask should look something like this:

100% organic!…says my Indian salesman smile.

Once you have that shitty yellowy looking concoction, you may proceed to cover your face with it.

Like so:

A face only a house cat could love.

Yes, my face matches my Captain Morgan shirt. And I look pretty darn happy about it.

Keep that crap on for about 10 minutes and then wash off with cold water.

And voila! Radiant Indian bride face for everyone!

You’re welcome, world.

Willing to lie about how we met: A guide to keeping it real with online dating

I think it’s about time I came clean and confess something. For the past few months or so, I have resorted to the realm of online dating. Well, this was not so much a confession as it is what I thought would be a good segway into giving you folks a play-by-play into the stupid monkey dance I do in my valiant efforts at finding everlasting true love.

From the very start, the one problem I had with online dating was that it took away my fairytale. Now when people asked, I wouldn’t be able to tell them we met when he rescued me from a urinating homeless man on the subway, or that my hot neighbour knew it was love at first sight when he saw me innocently washing his car in my daisy duke shorts that I specifically bought for the occasion.

Regardless, the thought of the immense potential I have of becoming a cat owner, or worse my Indian mother searching for a worthy suitor for me were incentives enough to swallow my pride and bite the bullet.

In my findings, online dating basically is a four-stage, blindfolded journey through the jungles of modern-day MTV love. And if you ever decide to get on this bandwagon, don`t be afraid embarrased. I`m here to give you a taste of what you possibly could be getting into:

Stage 1: The Hunt

Also known as: The Profile Search

Real Life Equivalent: Scanning the bar for people who don`t look like they conduct secret gatherings in their basement to read out the Communist Manifesto.

Much like in real life, your profile search will lead you to find both decent and douche alike. You can tell decent by a normal smiley picture taken at a wedding, usually including a puppy in the background. Douche by a shirtless, Instagram photo taken in the bathroom mirror, usually including a tank of protein supplements in the background.

It’s at times like this that you have to remember that you are here because you couldn`t get a date in real life to save your life. Beggars can`t be choosers. Even douches deserve everlasting true love. Even if only for their excellent photog skills.

Once you have picked a profile that looks like it could have potential to go far…and by ‘far’ I mean enough to make you overcome the urge to fling your laptop at your plant Penny, you will find yourself in Stage 2.

Stage 2: The Size up

Also known as: Scanning a profile for character flaws by subconcisouly judging their grammar

Real Life Equivalent: Making eye contact with someone who looks like they hail from a decent gene pool while trying to see if you can find hints of axe murderer in their eyes.

Reading through profiles is a crucial step in finding your soulmate, let me tell ya! By now after scanning through hordes of profiles, you would have found a few key similarities in everyone who joins dating sites:

1) They’re ALL loving their single life.

2) They ALL love to travel.

3) Their ALL are on this site because their sick of the bar scene.

While this ALL sounds dreamy, let me  bitchslap you out of online oblivion. People who LOVE being single are usually found in cloistered convents and Siberian mountain caves…not online dating sites.

And perhaps it WOULD be better to meet someone at a bar, because if you are anything like me, you’d be more inclined to talk to them when you are blissfully unaware of ‘they’re’ inability to properly use contractions and possessive pronouns.

Yes. It is THAT simple.

That being said, please don’t be like me. Give people a break and move on to Stage 3.

Stage 3: Establishing interest

Also known as: Swallowing your pride and showing the lucky POI (person of interest) you think they’re rad enough to warrant 3 more seconds of your time.

Real Life Equivalent: Letting decent gene pool lover buy you a drink while knowing they’re probably mentally undressing you.

You swallowed your pride, charged your credit card and spent countless hours stalking a wide array of photos, wondering who’s worthy enough to see your 50 shades of cray. You made it this far, you might as well go in for the kill. Shoot an email. Take a stab at a corny joke to break the ice. Even take a jab at yourself if that starts the ball rolling.

Please note that the homicidal terms of “kill”, “shoot”, “stab” and “jab” are not an indication of how you are subconsciously feeling at this point. Obviously.

And if you’re too shy or illiterate, there’s always The Wink. This is perhaps the greatest thing about online dating. You do not have to put yourself out there and risk rejection. In real life: you buy someone a drink; in cyber life: you wink.

In most online dating cases, a wink has usually gotten me a date. In most real life cases, a wink would have most likely gotten me a restraining order.

So send that email. Its more likely you’ll get to Stage 4 if you do.

Stage 4: The Meet up

Also known as: The date

Real Life Equivalent: Going out on a date.

There are several things that could have gone wrong with your email exchange:

1) The loser never responded.

2) The corny joke I asked you to make was too corny. Or not corny enough.

3) Their response was something like this: “hey ya, haha gud joke. where u frm? maybe we cud get like a drnk or somethin ur hot txt me bak”

But let’s be optimistic here and assume none of that happened and you scored a date with an awesome possum.

Congratulations you little love warrior! You did it! :) See? Online dating isn’t so bad.

The Aftermath:

Unfortunately, I cannot guide you any further on the actual date. Perhaps I’d be a little more qualified if I had an actual success. However, there are only three ways it could go:

1) Really well.

2) Really not well.

3) Limbo- Stop reading this and refer to the book “He’s just not that into you”

For the sake of optimism again and to end this post on a high note, let’s say that over a pitcher of sangria, you both saw your unborn children in each other’s Pinot-glazed eyes.

Huzzah! Success!

This does indeed happen (sometimes), and all you singletons out there HAVE to believe that this will happen to you one day. 

Whether you find your dreamboat lover online or offline, there IS someone out there who will accept you for the complicated, delusional, imperfect, crazy bitch that you are. Someone that will make all the hours of wasted time scouring profiles worth every second.

And when that happens, shoot me an email to thank me for guiding you through that dark moment in your life when you whipped out your credit card in quiet resignation.

I’ll even take a wink.

The Mystery of the Disappearing Blogger

General Disclaimer: This post contains sarcasm and a spontaneous combustion-inducing picture of Ian Sommerhalder. You know, just the usual.

It’s me again! It really is. You’re not seeing things.

Yes, I did check the date on the last time this blog was updated. I’m well aware it reads May 31st. I’m also aware that’s two whole months. I’ve had many people ask me what kind of cave I’d crawled into? Perhaps I was dead? Or worse still, broke both my arms in a freak summer accident..like..I don’t know…think of a terrible accident where you lose both arms that one could only joke about in really bad taste.

Nonetheless I’m here now. You can take the girl out of the blogging, but you can’t take the attention-seeking tendencies fueled by blogging out of the girl…not for too long anyway. Hence, I am back.

Really, you guys didn’t miss much in the past two months. Its been a pretty dead summer so far. But now that I have quelled most of your fears about me not being dead or armless, you may be wondering what the hell I’ve been doing to keep me away from blogging for so long. Well, apart from me loving the fact that the weather’s been hotter than two rabbits making babies in a sock, here’s an update of my MIA misadventures:

1) Working on my summer tan:

You may think that a girl like me needs a tan like Dolly Parton needs a boob job, but I beg to differ. Since one of the only joys of short Canadian summers is soaking up those deliciously warm cancer rays, I refuse to be discriminated against because of my skin color. Here’s a first hand look at my new before and after sun-kissed countenance:

Before and After. Am I the only one that thinks this is NOT the exact same photo?

 2) Watching entire seasons of The Vampire Diaries:

Don’t look at me like that, you judgers! I am but a weak human being. Yes, much of the time I could have spent blogging was spent rather in mindless teeny bopper vampire obsessions. Would it sound any better if I told you that what I really have  is actually an Ian Sommerhalder obsession?

Here ladies, is this convincing at all?

Photo credit: the internet

Fellas, there’s a new Ryan Gosling in town. You may groan if you wish but stay away from that “Unfollow” button.

3) Getting hit on by a 12-year-old at my bus stop:

You all know by now that between my numerous posts on friend zones, my hot neighbour and colossal cockblocks of the Universe, my love life has been about as steamy as an empty can of cat food. Not anymore, dolls!

Not. Any. More.

For the past month or so, I have had a questionable suitor at my bus stop. It all started when this little boy asked me if I had change for a five for bus fare. I offered to just pay for his bus fare since I felt sorry for this child. The child flatly refused. He wanted to pay for his ticket fair and square. I managed to scrounge up some change.

The next day we met again. He stared at me for about 5 minutes after which he smiled and asked me if I were in grade 9 or 10. It was cute.

The following day he struck up a conversation about where he lives, where he grew up and how public transit evolved since he was young(er) and how he didn’t want me to take offense that he didn’t accept my money for bus fare. A real man never asks a woman to pay for his bus fare.

After that he asked me if he could borrow my cell phone to call his mother.

Come to think of it maybe I’m getting ahead of myself on this one.

4) Attending Coldplay concerts:

Speaking of being eternally single, this is probably one of the reasons why. All you haters can hate, but I’ll proudly admit that Coldplay has always been one of my favorite bands. Seeing them live for the first time was the icing on the cake of life. I guess I could also admit that I felt the same way when I saw John Mayer in concert for the first time, but do I really want to be alone with 6 cats and a plant named Penny, listening to “Your Body is a Wonderland” for the rest of my life? Hmmm.

5) Reading 50 Shades of Grey:

This time your judgement is well deserved. That being said, I did read these books. And my pompous, self-righteous, grammar loving self wanted to sit with a red marker and circle every second line of this horribly written book because it was seriously distracting me from all of the “kinky f*ckery” (as Mr. Christian Grey so eloquently put it.)

And what’s Fifty Shades without kinky f*ckery? (that was a rhetorical question)

….not to mention trying to have the lowest self-esteem issues possible and using terrible syntax.

6) General tomfoolery:

General tomfoolery includes but not limited to: drinking adult beverages, berating people who complained about the heat, tanning (refer to #1), shopping, procrastinating from blogging, sitting on patios, staring out my window for hours with a pair of binoculars patiently waiting for my hot neighbour to come out running shirtless and of course, getting grief for not blogging.

So there you have it. Now you’re up to date with what I haven’t talked about in two months. But clearly, you haven’t missed much. What I’m really curious about is what have all of you guys been up to in the last little while? What exciting things have happened to you?? Or am I the only one who’s had exciting things happen (as elaborately demonstrated above)