Monthly Archives: October 2007

Hurts So Good

I’m exhausted. It’s late. I should be going to bed, but I want to write. Here I am.

Vanilla chai, this time. I never drink this tea, so it seemed somewhat appropriate.

My limbs are sore. I’ve been practicing my Tai Chi on a regular basis, and my understanding has surpassed my physical ability. I’m starting to over-exert myself. I’ve also been using my arms instead of my whole body when advancing in single push hands, causing my arms to work more than they should. Tonight, it got to the point where they were completely weak. I suspect Elizabeth could feel this, and she switched arms before I had the good sense to do it myself.

It’s getting cold in the house1. The thermostat says 20, but it feels more like 18. I stood in the shower for a good 15 minutes, letting my skin burn under the hot water, to the point where I stepped out of the shower into the cold air and started to sweat.

No editing. No backtracking. Just type, and publish.

I happened to come across a video today by the Grass Roots.

When I think of all the worries people seem to find
And how they’re in a hurry to complicate their minds
By chasing after money and dreams that can’t come true
I’m glad that we are different, we’ve better things to do
The others plan their future, I’m busy loving you

One, two, three, four
Sha-la-la-la-la-la live for today.
Sha-la-la-la-la-la live for today.

And don’t worry ’bout tomorrow, hey hey hey hey.

Maybe I’m just reading into it, like a born-again, but the lyrics struck me as very Taoist, and the idea of detachment in particular2. Darren jokes that I’ll start preaching to him the next time I visit him because our conversations always stray to Taoism.

I’ve been feeling decidedly dark, decidedly yin, lately. Not sad or upset, but in an energetic way. I’m bouncy. Maybe this is the way my brain adjusts to my previously cheerful upswing. The funny thing is that I’m no less cheerful, just in a different way. I feel more balanced. It’s as if the mind aches from some unknown force, expressed through an emotional state, yet relishes and wallows in this.

And I’m loving every minute of it.

  1. I’m trying to wait as long as possible before turning the heat on []
  2. Something I’ve only recently been able to achieve to any relative degree of success. []

Moments of Unexpected Kindness

Yesterday was grocery day.

I looked out the window, and it was raining. “You can’t wait for the perfect opportunity forever”, I told myself, so I grabbed my toque, my hoodie, my jacket, and stepped outside.

The rain wasn’t heavy, but enough to soak through in a couple minutes.

On my way to the store, I thought of putting an ad in the classifieds.

WANTED: RAIN DANCER

Looking for cheerful model to dance in rain for photo project.

Should be slim build. Light-brunette to blond hair, no longer than shoulders. Bring own clothes, short-sleeved with no logo preferred.

Will offer digital negatives for portfolio as compensation.

It was a short walk.

At the deli counter was the regular bunch of hooligans, a group of unmotivated, lackadaisical guys with whom I’ve dealt many times before.

I was about to say something to get their attention when another young man (whom I initially assumed was part of this group, with the same facial hair and the same mug), walked up to greet me.

“Barbecue chicken?”, he asked.

“Please”.

I stood there waiting for less than a moment before he came around the counter with something in his hand.

“Wipe your glasses off with this shit”, he told me, and seeing the beads of rainwater on my glasses, handed me a wad of paper towel. The uncouth manner in which he presented the paper towel made his gesture all the more warm.

Handing me my dinner, he said “Take it easy, bro”, and touched his fingers to his forehead in a mini salute.

The rain stopped before I stepped outside again.

And I haven’t cleaned my glasses, or stopped smiling since.

Thanksgiving Weekend '07

Ah yes. My first trip “home”1 in about a year and a half, since my parents got divorced.

The entirety of my trip was in the company of Andrew and Alex, who hosted me for the weekend. Pictures tell the story.

Drinks at the Madison

Thumbnail: Wide-angle Madison
Thumbnail: Jason and Kerry
Thumbnail: Alex and Emily
Thumbnail: Anne
Thumbnail: Rob and Sampson
Thumbnail: Alex and Kerry

On Friday night, we went to The Madison to catch up with their old dragonboat teammates. The Madison is a massive pub, made from two or three amalgamated houses in the downtown district. A very popular spot, which was apparent from the amount of people in it as the night went on.

I hadn’t been out drinking in…two years? Something like that.

Continue reading “Thanksgiving Weekend ’07″…

  1. I’ve decided that from now on, the quoted “home” will refer to Toronto, and the unquoted home will refer to Ottawa []

The God Ritual

I saw her there again, wearing the same clothes, with her life in two new grocery bags. On the same night of another faceless week, except the temperature dropped, and I was standing outside in my bomber jacket, looking in. This time, she was sitting upright and silent, unmoving, hat draped over her eyes.

Crashing inside, I thought.

Her hands were cracked and dark from exposure. How I wanted to reach out, and straighten the tangled skein of her black hair. But what could I do?

God isn’t here anymore.

Grey And Undecided

It was grey today.

Grey from morning to night. Grey inside and out.

I strolled home from work amid the rainfall, with Sara Melson and her saccharine lyrics in my earphones. Words sung unrestrained, clichéd almost, like any other love song, but with an experienced maturity nonetheless.

Now my hands are worn, my clothes are torn
A few of my dreams have been met with scorn
And I don’t have too much time left to borrow
But still I’m gonna love you like I’ve never been hurt before

Drawn to her voice more than her face, sugary sweet mixed with a hint of strength. Guilty pleasure? Maybe. Not that I mind anymore.

But it was still grey today, and I was still undecided.