Monthly Archives: January 2009

Tai Chi Deadline

I’ve start­ed learn­ing large san shou in my Tai Chi class. While it’s fun to be prac­tic­ing anoth­er inter­ac­tive form of the Yang style, it’s also a lit­tle scary to be learn­ing some­thing new as my teacher nears retire­ment (when he reach­es 60 in four years). I’m start­ing to wor­ry that I won’t reach a lev­el where I can prac­tice effec­tive­ly on my own before his time is up.

At 2 class­es a week, 52 weeks a year, and 4 years left to go, we can expect rough­ly 416 class­es total; every class is worth 0.24% of a very lim­it­ed resource.

A class­mate once told me that his com­ing retire­ment is a good thing. We’ll be forced to go else­where to expand our knowl­edge of Tai Chi, because we reach cer­tain lim­i­ta­tions when prac­tic­ing with the same part­ners, skill lev­els, part­ners, styles, body types, and even teach­ers. While I under­stand his rea­son­ing, it doesn’t change the fact that I may not be able to con­tin­ue learn­ing what I know now, if anoth­er teacher doesn’t offer the same cur­ricu­lum.

Added to this is the fact that mar­tial Tai Chi teach­ers are hard to find in a city as small as this. Good teach­ers, espe­cial­ly ones suit­ed to your learn­ing style, with the right bal­ance of patience and dis­ci­pline, are even less com­mon.

It makes me won­der where I’ll be with my Tai Chi progress in four years.

Back To Life

Christmas lights

Thumbnail: Present wrapping paper
Thumbnail: Cat under Christmas tree
Thumbnail: Scented infuser sticks
Thumbnail: Blue-pink gradient
Thumbnail: Powdered candy

The hol­i­days are over. I sus­pect that I’ve eat­en more choco­late over the last two weeks than ever in my life.

The two New Year’s par­ties were great, although I missed see­ing Rob at Aaron’s. I did get a New Year’s kiss though, some­thing I nor­mal­ly feel awk­ward about when the cou­ples are all par­tak­ing and I hide behind my cam­era.

The holes in my ceil­ings have yet to be fixed, and it makes me cringe every time I walk into my bed­room or bath­room, so I spent all my time in the liv­ing room. Every day, I’d wake up, eat, play games, watch movies, then fall back asleep there.

On occa­sion, I’d vis­it friends or see a movie, if only for the sake of get­ting out. Some nights, I’d open the blinds and let the burn­ing sky pour in, just so I could know that there was some­thing out there out­side of my lit­tle micro­cosm.

I’m glad to be back to life. I was feel­ing so lack­adaisi­cal and dis­con­nect­ed, drift­ing aim­less­ly with­out any rea­son or pur­pose. In a strange way, I feel recharged, if only because I had two weeks with­out a reg­u­lar sched­ule.

There Is No Such Thing As Love

Let me give it to you straight, straight like an arrow.

I’ve had these words stuck in my head for some time now. Lyrics from the tit­u­lar Dears track I first heard in uni­ver­si­ty, back when I would go home in the sum­mer and watch The Wedge on Friday nights.

I know that’s awful­ly cyn­i­cal to say, but I need proof that it is pos­si­ble today.

I just wish I could accept that fact. I’m start­ing to won­der if that’s why I keep hear­ing the words in my head. It’s my sub­con­scious remind­ing me, keep­ing me ground­ed.

Maybe that’s why we watch these movies. Hollywood would have us believe that love exists.

It’s the same sto­ry, where guy sees girl, falls in love, and hap­pi­ly ever after. In between, there’s always the overused plot ele­ment of the guy win­ning over the girl by reveal­ing him­self and his feel­ings. After all, this alone is enough to win any girl over, regard­less of whether she found him attrac­tive or not, she was mar­ried or sin­gle, or he was the nerd and she was the cheer­leader.

But love does­n’t exist in real life, as much as I want to believe that it does.

Not for me, any­way.

Krista and Shane at 160 Workshops

This was by far the best con­cert I’ve ever been to in my life, and not just because Shane ded­i­cat­ed It’s A Drag to me and Julie (although that was TOTALLY AWESOME).

It was the inti­mate set­ting, chill atmos­phere and awe­some music that made it unlike any oth­er per­for­mance I’ve attend­ed. This pri­vate show was at 160 Workshops, a house that reg­u­lar­ly opens its doors for craft work­shops to bring peo­ple togeth­er in the Ottawa com­mu­ni­ty.

Shane’s songs are always best in small venues like this. They’re per­son­al and sub­tly strik­ing, and the acoustic sound real­ly brings that warmth across.

Shane did a mix of old and new mate­r­i­al, then took requests from audi­ence mem­bers, along with some par­tic­i­pa­tion on vocals, spoons, and cow­bell. There also hap­pened to be Canadian nerd­core rap­per Jesse Dangerously in atten­dance, and after some prod­ding, he pro­vid­ed rhymes for Girls by the Beastie Boys, along with beat­box­ing back­ground per­cus­sion for Les Ouaouarons.

And, of course, Krista Muir (aka Lederhosen Lucil) was the head­lin­er, pro­mot­ing her new full-length album, Accidental Railway. The album includes a huge map for a fic­tion­al town that Shane made, with names of streets and places tak­en from mem­o­ries of their tour togeth­er.

Other shows with Krista Muir and Shane Watt

  1. At the Workshop Studio & Boutique
  2. At Le Petit Salon des Arts
  3. At Irene’s Pub
  4. At 160 Workshops