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:

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

But I’m back! :D

Immigration officers say the darnedest things

If for some reason you have felt my blogging absence in your soul for the past week- don’t fret, children. I actually have a legit excuse this time.  As a lot of you already know, my never-ending immigration problems with Canada have been a constant source of bemoaned bitch fests on this blog.

Around this time last year, I wrote a very heartfelt letter to Canada making a pretty strong case of why this country needs to drop all this Bollywood-style drama and welcome me to the family already. Unfortunately, none of the big wigs in Ottawa read my blog or they would have seen that my love for Canada knows no bounds.

I’ve been living here as a foreigner for so long that I was sure the government must have either forgotten about me or has been using my application as a place-mat for their Tim Hortons’ coffee cups.

And then last week, just as I was in the middle of writing a miserable blog post about why Hallmark should hire me as their executive greeting card writer (I clearly have big dreams), I received an email from my immigration lawyer. It was an email I have been waiting a very very long time for.

I’m getting teary-eyed even writing this sentence: After 8 years, 3 months, and 21 days, my immigration application to become a permanent resident in Canada was finally APPROVED.

I was a little most excited about becoming immigrant than these people were about Canada winning gold at hockey in the Vancouver Olympics.

I was a little more excited about becoming an immigrant than these people were about Canada winning gold at hockey in the Vancouver Olympics. (Source: http://www.chicagotribune.com)

The past eight years of my time in Canada were probably the happiest and the hardest years of my life. I met some of the most amazing people whom I eventually called friends, I started this blog, I found religion, my first immigration application was denied, my status was incorrectly filed and as a result I lost my entire savings to the government in taxes leaving me completely broke. And then I broke my foot.

I laughed about it all till I almost peed my pants, and I cried about it all till I almost peed my pants…and eight years later, all of it came full circle as I stood in the immigration line clutching my confirmation letter- happy, proud, relieved and exhausted all at the same time.

But as much as I would love to tell you all more about my harrowing immigration ordeal, the whole point of this post was actually to tell you about the awesome immigration officers who marked the end of this chapter in my life.

Border immigration officers have always scared the crap out of me. They are stoic, expressionless fixtures who are trained to be suspicious of everything from puppies to empty tuna cans. Part of the whole charade of becoming a landed immigrant in Canada meant that I actually had to “land” in the country.

This required a drive to Niagara Falls, crossing the border into the States and then “landing” in Canada at the border on the way back. 

Crossing the US border is a feat in and of itself. I blame it on the fact that I was born in Kuwait. Names of Middle-Eastern countries stamped in your passport are never meritorious in these situations. We had a two hour wait in the line up in the immigration office at the US border.

The US immigration official dealing with my passport was a young man with the same stoic appearance as everyone else.

He asked me some questions, and then stared suspiciously back and forth between me and my passport. I almost shit my pants.

US Immigration officer: “How long are you going to be in the States?”

Karen: “Just a day”

 US Immigration officer stares at me again. I was sure I was never going to get out of here. 

US Immigration officer: “Do you know who Selena Gomez is?”

Karen: “Huh? Umm yeh.”

US Immigration officer: “You look like her”

Karen: “Thanks. I get that all the time”

US Immigration officer: “Sorry to hear about you and Justin Beiber”

Karen: “I’m not crying myself to sleep over it”

US Immigration officer: “Good to see you’re pulling through.”

Karen: “I do what I can”

US Immigration officer: “Here’s your passport. Have a good trip.”

When a US Immigration officer pays you such a high compliment, there's no other choice but to believe it.

When a US Immigration officer pays you such a high compliment, there’s no other choice but to believe it.

It was a relief to know that the Americans weren’t trying to link me to some terrorist ring…just to Justin Beiber. Clearly they already thought I was Canadian enough. Now no one can say that US Immigration officers don’t have a sense of humor.

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The Canadian border immigration officers also had an unusual sense of humor…which they displayed through this very cruel prank they played on me.

Our car pulls up to the window and we hand the immigration officer lady our passports.

Canadian Immigration officer: “Who’s doing their landing here?”

Karen: “I am!”

Canadian Immigration officer looks at me confused.

Canadian Immigration officer: Umm…were you told to come to the border to do your paper work?”

Karen: “Yes. I was told I could come to the border anytime.”

Canadian Immigration officer: “Who told you this? I’m sorry, but we don’t do permanent residence paper work on Saturdays. You’ll have to come back.”

For the second time that day I almost shit my pants.

Karen: “What?!? No!! Please. I was told I could get it done anytime.”

Canadian Immigration officer: “No ma’am, you can’t. Also, do you realize your visa here expired a couple of days ago?”

Karen: “NO IT DIDN’T!”

I was visibly on the verge of tears. The Canadian Immigration officer took one look at me and burst out laughing.

Canadian Immigration officer: “I’m so sorry. I’m just messing with ya. Come on out. Breathe. We’ll go in and do your paperwork”

I chalked this one down to the fact that maybe this woman was sitting out all day tired, probably needed a little entertainment and I was the perfect scapegoat.

The officers inside took all my forms, stamped all my documents.

They finally handed all my stuff back to me and said the words I never thought I’d hear:

“Congratulations, you are now a landed immigrant in Canada. Sorry you had to wait for so long.”

A declaration AND a quasi apology from a Canadian government official.

I smiled and walked out of that office feeling like I just won the life lottery.

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!

The Greatest Political Bollywood love affair of all

It’s the day after the American elections and Canada is hot on its heels trying to get a piece of their neighbor’s presidential victory pie. It figures though, the most politically exciting thing to happen to us in the recent past was in September when Parti Québécois  (a small bunch of French crackpots who want Quebec to get the hell out of Canada) won a minority.

But that hoopla lasted all of 36 hours because no one really cares someone from the party got shot, resulting in everyone forgetting about Parti Québécois’s mandate and their existence.

As my friend Amanda pointed out, we don`t get this excited for our own elections. However every four years, throw in a superpower country with a black President and a Mormon governor battling to run it, and America`s northern neighbors all of a sudden become fierce political pundits on their Facebook statuses (stati?).

In fact, 87% of Canadians stayed up till 3:00am last night waiting for  the election results, a turnout rivaled only by hockey games that our home teams never qualify for and the Royal Wedding. (This stat has clearly been pulled out of my ass)

Canada , being a relatively liberal country, welcomed the news of Obama getting re-elected with much jubilation (judging by everyone’s Facebook stati). Obama quite possibly is more loved in Canada right now then our homeboy Prime Minister Stephen Harper. I’m not Canadian (yet), but sometimes I actually get a sense that the average Canadian cherishes empty Tim Hortons coffee cups more than their prime minister.

Stephen Harper, for those of you who are not Canadian or who do not spend all their spare time googling the terms ‘ridiculous things said by obscure politicians’ , has said some things in the past that have blown the politically correct minds of many Canadians.

Here are some Harper gems:

“You have to remember that west of Winnipeg the ridings the Liberals hold are dominated by people who are either recent Asian immigrants or recent migrants from eastern Canada; people who live in ghettos and are not integrated into Western Canadian society.”  On Canada’s failing credibility (Report Magazine 2011)

“If Ottawa giveth, then Ottawa can taketh away.” Usually taketh. 

“I was asked to speak about Canadian politics. It may not be true, but it’s legendary that if you’re like all Americans, you know almost nothing except for your own country. Which makes you probably knowledgeable about one more country than most Canadians.” (Speech to a Montreal meeting of the Council for National Policy, June 1997)

However, my absolute favorite Harper quote came to me today on Yahoo News:

Canada and India need to beat the odds like a Bollywood movie

Being a (future) Indian  immigrant in Canada, I was all over this story like Indian immigrants are over a Boxing day sale at Walmart. Canada’s prime minister basically compared the trade relationship between India and Canada to a Bollywood movie- full of heinous obstacles, but true love prevails in the end.

I’m not sure how many Bollywood movies Harper has watched in his lifetime, but it can’t be that many. Bollywood movies typically last a thousand years, and I’m willing to bet he’s still bravely powering through the one he started watching in 1996.

An important issue that concerned me in Harper’s Bollywood love analogy were the two sexes. I’m of the school of thought that India is clearly the man in this relationship. Harper may have tried to sell it like he was the macho man who had all the answers to India’s deepest questions but let’s face it… we’re bigger and hairier.

Going with that line of thinking, it’s pretty easy to see how Harper’s analogy is nothing short of pure genius. Unlike me, who lost interest in Bollywood movies the moment someone in it spoke, Harper clearly was determined enough to make it through years of costume changes, rain, needless drama and utter bullshit from everyone else outside of the two lovers.

India’s wooing by means of cheap labor and profitable investment opportunities often fall on finicky Canadians who can never decide what the hell they want. It took decades of mindless dancing around trees to music by shitty bands like Bad Economy and Inflation Domination for Canada to finally give in to dating India, even if only for the economic perks.

Here’s lookin’ at you, India!

And like any true Bollywood movie, convincing the drama queen to go out with you is only the beginning of the next one hundred shiteous years of pain. Harper knows this when he talks about obstacles.

Obstacle 1: The no-good villain who tries to steal the girl resulting in one of the parties always being stuck in an economical friend zone. The villain’s debatably better looking, less hairy and does everything for less. *cough*China*cough*.

But the hero stands his ground. He knows he’s a good investment. Other countries should consider themselves lucky if they hold his affections! And if they don’t, he’ll nuke ‘em all muhahahahaha. Guys, I do the Count Dracula laugh, but this is not a joke. India actually has a nuclear program. And unlike some other (alleged) nuclear countries, India is not pussy-footing its existence. Which leads me to the next Bollywood obstacle:

Obstacle 2: The disapproving family members. None of Canada’s family members are pleased with this strange relationship, especially Canada’s dominating big brother.  *cough*America*cough*. The words “our nuclear program” is not something America looks compassionately at, especially not when India follows it up with the words “is none of your fucking business”.

Obstacle 3: The man’s buddies that nobody likes. Big Brother America is forever plotting to round up a gang of goons to take all of Canada’s hockey sticks and  beat the crap out of India’s commie bff *cough*Russia*cough*

It’s a never ending cycle of drama, cheap slaps and unnecessary rain dances.

At the end of it all, I couldn’t agree with Harper more. Then again I will agree with anyone who will give me a prime opportunity to write about my two most favorite things: Canada and good-naturedly bashing Bollywood movies.

This truly is a love story with many obstacles. But obstacles good communication can overcome. And if it is anything like an actual Bollywood movie, then this story will have a happy ending. Even if it takes a thousand years.

In keeping with the Bollywood tradition of having a thousand soundtracks, here’s one:

Just use your imagination and replaced all the annoying Twilight characters with multiracial women in white saris dancing around maple trees. 

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.

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)

Friday Chronicles: Icecream trucks and Manwhores

It’s Friday again, dollfaces! After my Good Friday abstenance from bitchiness and sarcasm hiatus due to me being hypoglycemic and hungry, I am back in the pink of health ready to throw in my unnecessary two cents on the random and the ridiculous behaviour of human beings.

Although, there were two weeks worth of news to cover, I was lazy and unvigilant (unvigilant: probably not an actual word) to pick some Friday Chronicles-worthy ones. So, get ready to put up with and celebrate mediocrity this week.

We will begin with some news from my friendly neighbours down south:

1) Ice cream man accused of selling pot:

Move over Kelis and put some clothes on while you’re at it. Alexander Hoskins’ ice-cream now brings everyone to the yard. Including several fun-ruining law enforcement individuals. The 20-year-old Maryland resident, who was found to have stashes of marijuana among his Rocky Roads and Cocoa Jamochas in his icecream truck, was allegedly selling a little somethin’-somethin’ more than freezy-pops to teenagers and young adults. Either Mr. Hoskins is extremely ballsy to be dealing out of an ice-cream truck, the very symbol of innocence and frightening childhood nightmares or extremely dumb to think he could make money off of the brokest and stupidest section of society. Regardless, I don’t know why I bothered with this story.

2) Ryan Gosling saves the day…AGAIN:

Canada’s National Treasure Ryan Gosling left millions of women swooning in their panties once again when news spread like syphilis in a frat house that he saved a woman’s life by grabbing her and pulling her out of the way of an incoming vehicle. This incident is just another ovulation-inducing event in the phenomenon of saint-like behavior displayed by this Canadian SUPERSTAR. Until fairly recently, it had come to my knowledge that Gosling had a place in the swanky neighbourhood of Yorkville in downtown Toronto.

Ryan you beautiful soul, one day our paths will cross. Quite possibly soon since from now on I’ll be spending most of my Friday and Saturday nights stepping into oncoming traffic on Bloor Street with hopes of being grabbed and pulled by you.

3) Canada ranks fifth in “happiness survey”:

Its true. The only guys happier than us are the Dutch and those damn Scandinavians. But we all know that’s only the case because they have tulips, better weather, better health care, better education, better life and legalized marijuana. In an effort to be a little proactive, I asked a bunch of people if this survey truly represented the average Canadian. Maybe this “bunch of people” shouldn’t have ALL been my patients because I guess its pretty hard to be enthused about being happy when you’re an old, pensionless, arthritis-stricken Italian immigrant.

That being said, everyone was generally happy that we beat the US, who came in 11th.

Full story on the happiest and saddest countries here.

4) Adam Levine splits from his long-term girlfriend Anne V.:

If there had to be one reason for these two to break up, it would have had to be that dress she's not wearing.

Some more panty-twisty news for you ladies:. This love between Maroon 5′s manwhore frontman Adam Levine and Russian supermodel Anne V. has finally taken its toll. Because she said goodbye. (See what I just did there with the cleverly twisted lyrics?…you’re welcome all of 2 and a half Maroon 5 fans out there) Anne V., who’s last name is a 12 syllable unpronounceable Russian word starting with the letter V, strutted out the door on realising (after two whole years) that marriage is a deal breaker for Levine.

Levine for his part is in misery, blindsided by the fact that Anne broke his heart because he didn’t want to marry her and now spends his days listening to “This Love” wondering where it all went wrong.

 5) IT worker arrested for urinating in office chair:

I know what you’re thinking. Where the hell does this bitch find these stories?! I’m doing you a favor really. Now you have something to talk about when you’re on that awkward date with that guy you met at the bar.

Anyway, so this asshole (the IT guy, not your bar date. Although, he could be an IT asshole who pisses on chairs. Or in front of you while you’re sitting in the front seat of his car. Not that this has ever happened to me.) went around piddling on the chairs of all the sexy ladies in his office. Yes folks, this pisscake actually looked up photos of the attractive females in his company database and then went around waving his pipe onto their chairs. Because nothing says “you’re hot” like a little yellowish stain in your chair.

Full story on the pissing IT guy here.

Sadly, that’s all the time we have for the Friday Chronicles today. I hope your Friday the 13th did not bring any shitty luck on your end of the week. Stay tuned next week for more random news items. And if you  happen to use any of these stories to impress friends, lovers or the guy at the bar you’re desperate to knock socks with, don’t forget to tell them where you heard it first! ;)

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Friday Chronicles: Roll up the Albino Rhino

In the name of randomness that usually underscores the Friday Chronicles, I googled the words ‘Friday quotes’  so I could have a hilarious opener for this week’s chronicles. You guys all deserve some opening hilarity for being so awesome. Sadly, this is what Google spewed out:

“I’m not that girl from Freaky Friday any more! I’m a real adult. In fact, I hate children! I hate them all!”- Lindsay Lohan

Here’s hoping all you guys had a better week than La Loco Lohan. If not, then here’s hoping you delay dousing yourself with gasoline for just enough time to read this week’s Chronicles.

What can I say…this was a pretty fun week in the news but I’ve been a little tired so if you sense a higher bitch index than usual, it’s just the crabby lady hormones talking. TMI? Indeed I believe so.

1) Tim Hortons begins its 2012 “Roll up the Rim” promotion:

This message is not brought to you by the Toronto tourism Board. If you are planning on visiting Toronto or just Canada in general, there is no better time than now. You may ask..why Karen? Why now when its -1o degrees celsius (14F for you Americans) and not when its 30 degrees celsius (hotter than you, America)?

Well, its Roll-up-the-Rim time, bitches! That’s right. Every year around spring time (subject to change) Tim Hortons Coffee House, Canada’s pride and joy, unveils Roll-up-the-Rim wherein after you are done guzzling your delicious Canadian beverage, you get the chance to bite at the rim (because it’s actually not that easy to roll) and win some cool prizes.However, because I’m a raging pessimist I usually never win anything.

The story of my life. Balled up fist and all. (www.thehammer.ca)

I also read the fine print that if you do win, Canadian residents will have to answer a skill-testing question. In case anyone asks, the Canadian national animal is the beaver. Not the moose. And not a yeti named Nantuck.

2) Kuwait plays Borat clip as Khazak national anthem:

The achingly rich country of Kuwait this year was host to the Arab Shooting Championship. Just that line should tell you that this is not a country you want to mess with. It’s probably why Maria Dmitrienko, the gold medal winner from Kazakhstan decided to just shut her gob and smile when she heard her beloved Kazakhstan’s national anthem replaced by the Borat spoof anthem, which basically talks about how Kazakhstan has the cleanest prostitutes in the region among its other positive attributes. The irony of it all is that Kuwait banned the movie Borat. Maybe that’s why they didn’t recognise the spoof when they “accidentally” played it off of someone’s bootleg Borat DVD. Oh you silly Kuwait you, always getting yourself in hot oil.

Full story here.

3) B.C. woman files human rights complain against restaurant about their beer:

Popular Canadian restaurant chain Earls came under fire recently when Ikponwosa (I.K.) Ero, a Vancouver resident complained to the Human Rights Tribunal that the restaurant’s beer “Albino Rhino” was offensive to her and everybody else suffering from albinism. Ero claimed that she had to leave her home country of Nigeria where albinos were constantly attacked and come to Canada to restart her life only to have a beer named after her condition.

If you’re anything like me, then several questions would have burned through your mind. Like for example, how is this not offensive to rhinos? Is PETA vacationing in the Bahamas? And another thing, has anyone tried looking up “Albino Rhino” in Urban Dictionary? (Y’alls can go and look it up yourselves). Because TRUST ME. This has nothing to do with albinos…or rhinos for that matter. I’m just gonna go now and maul over the possibility of calling the use of the word “brownies” as offensive. You know, because I’m brown. Don’t pretend you didn’t notice.

Full story here.

4) Canada goose attacks man in Mississauga, ON:

First of all, two thousand points to any non-Canadian who can correctly pronounce the word Mississauga. U.S.A. residents not eligible since you guys have Mississippi and they’re kind of the same.  Canada humans are clearly not the only ones enraged by the sudden weather change to frigidity this week from last week’s summer heat. Canada geese who returned for spring from their Florida vacay has been throwing hissy fits all week, the biggest one being a couple of days ago when our squawking angry national bird chased a man and fought him over a bag lying on the sidewalk. Its unclear whether the bird was pissed because he was cold, or because he was in Mississauga. Both reasons are understandable.

Who said Canada was a safe place? (www.blogs.riverfronttimes.com)

Here’s the goose video for your LOLZ pleasure.

And finally,

5) Prince Harry says it’s so hard to find love because of his princely status:

Prince Harry in a candid interview indicated that his royal engagements often cockblock stand in the way of romance and sometimes wishes he was just a normal guy. Harry, you adorable Brit. If you’re reading this right now, after looking far and wide through my best Facebook photos, I found the one good reason why you should dry your endless tears:

I also have one in red and purple. In case gold is not your color.

And that concludes this week’s edition of the Friday Chronicles. Just a little note, there will not be Friday Chronicles next week on account of it being Good Friday and I’m a good Catholic who tries really hard for least one day in the year to be nice and less sarcastic. And I’ll be away from a computer for most part of that weekend.

Until the next blog post, have an awesome weekend and the Friday Chronicles will be back to entertain you in a couple of weeks!

The Montreal Chronicles: Eat, Pray, Love Run from hobos

The following photo montage is a testament to the awesome weekend I had in Montreal. Trust me, this time it might be better if you see pictures instead of reading about me ramble on about how I loooooooove Montreal. This is not to say I won’t have SOMEthing to say about it. Anyway, let’s begin with the begining.

I got to Montreal by the Greyhound. The Greyhound may not be the most humane way to travel, but it is definitely the cheapest. After an all night 8 hour bus ride, I finally got there at around 9am and checked into a little Bed and Breakfast. I had the cutest room at the BnB, HANDS DOWN. Not that I saw anyone else’s room but seriously…how cutesy is this!

You cannot tell from the picture but this room is actually on a pretty crazy slant. Tres charming!

There was no better feeling in the world than passing out on that bed after a long night of the inhumane Greyhound night bus. And what’s more, my awesome host Natalie treated me to a three-course breakfast. I didn’t know three-course breakfasts even existed.

Anyway, on with the adventure:

EAT:

Lots of unhealthy eating was definitely done.

At Nickel's which is a restaurant chain owned by Celine Dion. Not even the song "My heart will go on" in the background was going to deter me from devoring the deliciousness on this plate.

 

Montreal's finest poutine. Just a quick explaination of what that styrofoam container contains for non-Canadian readers: that delicious heart-attack over there is french fries and oodles of gravy topped with cheese curds.

 

I haven't been to all the places in the world but Montreal quite possibly has the best almond croissants in the world.

PRAY:

Solo getaways are also great for getting in touch with your spiritual side. There’s nothing like not having your friends to stay out with till 4am and dissolve your troubles in tequilla shots.

The majestically towering Notre Dame Basillica

Notre Dame Basilica. One of the most gorgeous, peaceful and soul-stirring churches I've ever been in.

St. Joseph's Oratory. The Oratory is sitting on a hill behind the statue of St. Joseph in the Montreal fog.

RUN AWAY FROM HOBOS:

If you ever go to Montreal, you may or may not notice the population divided into three categories.

1) Normal people: These are people dressed like you and me. Regular Joe’s and Josephina’s going about their daily business of being French. If you are not a normal person and live in Montreal, then chances are you belong in one of the following two categories.

2) Hipsters

3) Hobos

One of the first things that happened to me when I got there was a fellow that looked like he had been living on locusts and brambles his whole life  came chasing after me screaming “Mademoiselle! Mademoiselle!..” followed by a string a French words. He could have been asking for sex or he could have been asking me for a chapstick. Who the hell knows. He even started talking to me in English to get me to talk to him. It was clearly amusing to everyone, including my iPod which actually quite appropriately started playing the song “Howling for you” by The Black Keys.

Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that since the culture of Montreal seemed to be predominantly hipsters and hobos, it might be appropriate to let you in on some tricks on how to be able to tell the difference.

The main reason why you would even confuse Montreal hipsters and hobos with each other is because: 

1) They both usually have beards.

2) They both wear mismatched clothes and don’t care.

3) They’re both bilingual.

However, here are the subtle differences:

1) Hobos will talk to ANYONE including you, animals, buildings, inanimate objects and themselves. Hipsters only talk to the latest version of the iPhone.

2) It is very easy to get a hobo’s attention. Just the mere fact that you exist in Montreal means a hobo or two will find you and chase you. You wouldn’t get a hipster’s attention even if you were dressed like Lady Gaga riding a giraffe holding a giant rubber chicken.

3) Hobos smell like urine and cigarettes. Hipsters smell like Starbucks and indifference.

And if you are still unsure, I drew you a picture that you can print out and take with you if you ever go to Montreal:

Now you know the difference. You're welcome.

All jokes aside, Montreal is absolutely gorgeous. Even after being chased by hobos. Here are some of my favorite photos:

Old Montreal.

Rue St. Catherine. The shopping street where I spent the rest of my time when I wasn't eating, in a church or being chased down the street.

More of cutsey Old Montreal

Surprisingly there were no couples trying to take cheesy photos near the LOVE structure. Guess I was the only cheesy one there.

Horse-drawn carriage ride along the cobblestoned streets of Old Montreal. Pretty freaking romantic if you're unfazed by the constant overpowering smell of horse poop

                                                                                                                           FIN

And that’s my little Montreal photo album for you. The weekend was way too short for everything I wanted to see and do but the whole experience still has me on a high. I’m already planning my next getaway and what I’m going to cover. I have a feeling there will be plenty of more Montreal Chronicles in the future. Until next time, have a happy Monday (about as happy as Monday could be).