Posted in Blogs, Books, Canada, Chocolate, Christmas, Environment, Family, Food, Holidays, Jane Austen, Movies, Music, Political, Televison, Uncategorized

You May Say I’m A Dreamer

1apeace22All that peace and love stuff, it’s just idealistic mumbo jumbo, right?

Or is it?

While I admit I don’t understand a lot of stuff, but as long as it’s not really hurting anyone, why would I care?

Too often, the commonly held view seems to be that if we don’t agree, we’re at odds.

Like somehow 7 billion of us are suddenly going to start agreeing, or we have to battle it out Star Trek style.

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For example, I find the rise of pumpkin spice alarming – apparently pumpkin spice is a season now, so the pumpkin spice must flow.

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Here’s a completely incomplete list of stuff people do that I don’t ‘get’, or want to (no particular order):

1. Touching wet paint or wet cement – yes, it’s wet, move on.
2. Running water after going to the bathroom instead of actually washing your hands.
3. Lying, lying, and what was that other thing, oh yeah, lying.
4. Judging a person based on their skin tone, religion, race, nationality, whom they choose to love, clothes, home, family, etc.

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5. Walking into traffic looking at a cellphone.
6. Bad driving.
7. Hurting others, especially children.
8. Loving something just because it’s endorsed by or has the name of a celebrity.

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9. Using racism as a political strategy.
10. Fat shaming, and also those who say fat shaming is wrong, because they’re also calling people fat.
11. Having fictional conversations in your head with others (ok, done this).
12. Not smiling back at a child or being impatient when an elderly person is slowly walking down the stairs in front of you.

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13. Yelling at furniture that jumped out and stubbed your toe (ok, I’ve totally done that).
14. Wearing uncomfortable shoes (especially with stubbed toes).
15. People who pretend they don’t fart (you do, we all do, own it).
16. Reading the instructions after you’ve done something.

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17. Saying “I’m sorry” when you’re not sorry.
18. Unenvironmentalists (you know that should be a word).
19. Buying non-orange pumpkins.
20. Pretending you don’t wish some cool movie-like thing would happen to you today instead of just the usual stuff…come on, you really haven’t done this?

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I can’t understand how people find the time or energy to judge, fight, or generally care so much about everyone else’s business. Does this have to do with our fight or flight response? Not running from sabre-tooth tigers (mostly), our fear response is now triggered by shopping (prices are terrifying), finding info on the internet (bloodcurdling), and politicians (I’ll take the tiger). Obviously our fear of scarcity has survived, so maybe those who are different or disagree feed into that fear. I’m just guessing, frankly, I’m baffled.

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The internet just seethes with fear and loathing which is why I’m happy when I find bloggers who make me smile. David Prosser, a wonderful, funny, and caring blogger from Wales offered the world his Buthidars philosophy https://lorddavidprosser1.wordpress.com/ – a hug, a good deed, a simple gesture, a smile…forging a path toward peace.

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And he shares his life each week at: https://barsetshirediaries.wordpress.com/ and kindly shared one of his novels, The Queen’s Envoy, with the caveat, it wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Perhaps, but I emphatically enjoyed the fanciful flight of fictitious foibles. It reminded me of watching Bond movies with my Dad. As a child I didn’t understand what Pussy Galore, Holly Goodhead, and “Oh James!” really meant, but the spirit of adventure always made me feel like anything was possible. I like that feeling, wherever I can find it.

It’s Thanksgiving this weekend in Canada; I’m thankful we can all agree to disagree, eh. I don’t tell people they’re stupid for their beliefs and I don’t expect them to understand my complicated relationships with: chocolate, spiders, TV, sleep, housekeeping, kale, Jane Austen, gravity, technology, toenail clippers, Christmas, pools (you know, cause of sharks), clowns, Thanksgiving, meat, and life in general.

We don’t have to agree to have fun, be respectful, and add love and hope to the world.

All we are saying is give peas peace a chance.

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Posted in Canada, Environment, Family, Food, Internet, Movies, Uncategorized

The Internet Has Spoken

1funny301I feel like I’m drifting away.

Connection is such a tenuous thing, physically or emotionally. You want to connect, to trust, but how do you know when the connection is toxic, or failing, or broken?

Each day, I try to tiptoe around the world for as long as I can, but the internet has made this challenging.

It’s a Catch-22, if I don’t connect to the internet I drift apart from the world, but if I connect to the internet, I’m bombarded with stuff : news, ads, studies, misery and success, and just, well, stuff.

Page after page, link after link of:

  • People with diseases and those pretending to have diseases, really? Pretending to have a disease? Stuns me every time.

  • Finding life on other planets – shouldn’t we concentrate on keeping what little intelligent life we have on Earth first?

  • What’s getting deflated? Definitely not the egos of athletes!

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  • Governments lying to us again…still?

  • Bragging, boasting, whining, complaining, rudeness, trolls and trouble.

  • Turtles and snakes in toilets, transformed food, books, social media, movies, cats, TV, music, royalty, and endless things going viral we won’t remember next week.

  • Riots, wars, conflicts, comets, poverty, abuse, slavery, rape, murder, mutant ants, fires, biker wars, shootings, floods, terrorism, volcanic eruptions, killer bees, public shaming, teachers having sex with students (in the wise words of Pink Floyd, Hey! teachers! leave the kids alone!)…1funny304

  • Hoaxes, scams, and stunts, aarrgghhh, my head is spinning!

  • NSA, CIA, IRS, CSIS, OMG, ISIS, UFO, LOL, NASA, it might be fun to stay at the YMCA, if we weren’t drowning in abbreviations.

  • Studies explaining things they think I should know, like: food, drinking, sleeping, the environment, politics, parenting. I figured out parenting, at first you’re disoriented, exhausted, scared to say or do the wrong thing, a bit like being abducted by aliens, then you realize, they’re adorable aliens, like ET and then, they have you, you have X-Files Stockholm Syndrome and you can’t get enough…or wait, is that politics, not parenting?

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  • Ads and commercials for things we don’t need, but apparently should want more than breathing.

  • And remember when we only knew a little about celebrities and their lives? I miss that.1funny283

Remember in Poltergeist, where the eldest daughter is standing in the street screaming, “What’s happening?!?”sometimes, that’s me, inside my head.1funny331

Don’t get me wrong, despite my woes, I’m happy to wake up alive every morning, as opposed to waking up dead, which is most inconvenient and usually alters your plans, not only for the day, but the foreseeable future. Yet I’m struggling, dear readers, to find a balance between using technology and being consumed by it. I suppose it’s the same with any relationship, you need boundaries, compromise and…

1. Mutual respect. If you’re feeling bad when using the internet, take some time away, explore other interests.

2. Independence. If you depend on it for everything, it’s likely to let you down one way or another.

3. Dreams. Does it inspire you to write that novel you’ve always talked about writing, talk to an old friend, travel, try new things, explore, take a chance…dream?

Perhaps sometimes you have to drift to make connections; strong connections, not overpowering ones.

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Posted in Canada, Environment, Family, Music, Parenting, Political, Uncategorized

Dreaming is Free

Are teens and young people at risk for dreaming anymore?

Dreaming has become very expensive…and I think you need an app for it.

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Boomers and Gen X were well-intentioned, wanting to give our children everything. Somehow it backfired and we’re leaving them with: a broken system, crumbling infrastructure, crippling debt, dubious morals, attention issues, a yawning wealth gap, a dying planet, corrupt governments and business.
Now in our defence, we also gave them: kittens on the internet, tons of fast food, and technology that might be destroying them.

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Yet I’m still hopeful. Why? Because they are.
Many young people still want to try. They want to change things.
The media gives us the impression that all young people care about is
their smart phones, that they don’t vote, they’re unmotivated, or joining terrorist groups.
But that’s because the news is pandering – sensationalism rules.
Saving the planet isn’t sexy.
Trillions in unfunded liabilities (governments are happy if you don’t pay attention to things like this) is boring and incomprehensible.
None of this has ratings potential. Rarely goes viral. But it should. We need to stop focusing on the negative and sensational.

Have we removed our children’s ability to dream? I hope not.1agenscrewed3
Maybe it would help if we stopped calling them things like, Generation Screwed. That’s uplifting.
Profusely unemployed or underemployed, many live at home longer or return home. Debt, especially from student loans, is weighing them down. They need to have hope.

This generation, Millennials, have been given so much.
Their expectations are high. A new smart phone in their hand, and often. Big TVs, little laptops and tablets, a car to drive, fast food, clothes, trips.
Yet when they get out into the world to earn enough to have those things themselves, they hit barriers – no jobs, part-time jobs, low-income jobs, outsourcing, and even their beloved technology is plotting to steal their jobs.

They’re told to: lower their expectations; accept the new normal; the low-hanging fruit has been picked; and society has reached a plateau. Wow, way to motivate.

That should be a Graduation Speech:

Knowing that society has reached a plateau and all the low-hanging fruit has been picked, we’re all going back home to live with our parents until we’re 40 or so. 1agenscrewed4
This is the new normal, having lowered our expectations of ever getting a decent job or a home.
We accept this is the way things are.
And in conclusion, check out this viral video of a zebra that can paint its own toenails.

 

Posted in Environment, Movies, Music, Uncategorized

I only wanted 2 see u laughing in the freezing rain

I never wanted 2 cause u any sorrow
(But I’m sad chipping ice off everything)
I never aimed 2 cause u any pain
(I fell on the ice and hurt my, er, derriere)
I only fancied one time 2 see u laughing
(But I’m not laughing)
I only wanted 2 see u laughing in the frozen rain
(Can u even see me in this rain?)

Freezing rain Freezing rain
Freezing rain Freezing rain
Freezing rain Freezing rain1ice2I only wanted 2 see u sliding in the Freezing rain
(that’s more than a little cruel)I never desired 2 be your lover
(it’s not u, it’s me)
I only wanted 2 be some kind of friend
(what kind of friend?)
Baby I would never steal u from another
(probably not, but u could try)
It’s such a shame our friendship had 2 end
(Hey baby, welcome 2 Dumpsville, Population: U)

Freezing rain Freezing rain
Freezing rain Freezing rain
Freezing rain Freezing rain

I only wanted 2 see u in the freezing rain
(What? Like a statue?)

Sunny, no, no, no, times are changing
Time to reach 4 something more Spring-like
Back off, winter, that u 2
U say u want to be a season?
But u can’t seem 2 make up your mind
I think u better warm up
And let me feel some warmer rain

Freezing rain Freezing rain
Freezing rain Freezing rain

If you know what I’m singing about out there
C’mon raise your ice scrapers!1ice5Freezing rain Freezing rain

I only want 2 see u, only want 2 see u after
the freezing rain

Inspired by the weather and Prince or whatever his name is these days.

Posted in Canada, Christmas, Environment, Holidays, Political, Uncategorized

Do You Wanna Build A Snowman?

“This is Anna Bjo1elves15rgman, reporting from The North Pole where it appears protesters from The Occupy Movement have set up camp to Occupy The North Pole.” Shivering in her Canada Goose parka, the young woman bravely placed the microphone in front of one of the Occupiers, “Excuse me, why has The Occupy Movement decided to Occupy The North Pole this Christmas?”

A handsome young man flashed a smile that was whiter than the snow around him before answering, “Actually, the Occupy movement is so three years ago. We’re the Change The North Pole Movement, because we believe the climate up here needs to change!”

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Pushing his iPhone6 into the pocket of his Moncler parka, Christian continued, “Santa is a fat rich old white man who has his own town, slave labour, and only works one day a year!”

Christian paused to point to the various tents, barricades, signs, and a handful of protesters milling around the streets of The North Pole. Santa’s the ultimate symbol of capitalism! He teaches children to be materialistic!”

A beautiful young woman holding two large Starbucks cups, smiled coyly as she handed Christian one of the steaming cup, “I got your fav, Christian, Double Tall Soy Latte,” Bianca crooned before turning a dazzling smile on the reporter. “We want human need, not corporate greed!

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The reporter, slightly stunned by all the dazzling smiles, wondered where they’d managed to find a Starbucks at The North Pole and was momentarily at a loss for words. Recovering swiftly, she nodded at her cameraman Hans to follow her as she walked with the protesters toward Santa’s Workshop. “What is it you hope to accomplish by Occupying, er, Changing The North Pole?”1elves13

Christian took a sip of his latte, looking thoughtful before answering. “The income inequality and wealth distribution between the wealthiest 1% and the rest of the population is no more obvious than here at The North Pole. The elves are the 99%. We want to bring awareness that while Santa sits around smoking a pipe, getting fatter, and being jolly, there is social and economic inequality here and worldwide.”

Bianca stepped brashly forward. “We want people to think, to ask questions, not just blindly follow the Santa Laws!” She then gaily waved at another protester and quickly texted what looked like gibberish before continuing, “There is no better slave than a slave who doesn’t know he’s a slave. I think Bono or Ariana Grande said that and they were so right. People need to wake up! People need see what’s in front of them!”

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A frigid wind raged as the reporter watched the two young people start texting, knowing she’d lost the little attention they possessed. With strains of happy Christmas songs emanating from Santa’s Workshop and chants of We Are Changing the Climate of the North Pole! behind her, the reporter smiled weakly at the camera and threw it back to the station with a simple yet bemused, “This is Anna Bjorgman, umm, do you wanna build a snowman?”

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Posted in Christmas, Environment, Holidays, Political

Slightly Less Stupid

1bang2If I worried about doing or saying something stupid I’d never open my mouth, write anything or probably leave the house, but as I get older I hope I’m slightly less stupid.
For me, the Christmas season seems to come with the gift of introspection. Maybe it’s because the season brings out the best and worst in people.
This year the news is filled with bizarre, almost surreal images that still seem vaguely familiar.
Terrorism. Shopping frenzies. Economic manipulations by the rich. Protests against the police for what can only be categorized as cataclysmically abysmal conduct. Since the police aren’t getting in trouble, their behaviour must be explicit or implicit policy, which makes it more disturbing.

Wrapped in a cloak of civility we shiver against the winds of change. As we become more and more comfortable, any discomfort sets off a fear response in us. We’ve been the white meat for a long time now, worth more, and as much as we say we’re not prejudiced, we are. And we’re fearful, why else would we vote in politicians that are self-serving fear mongers who only want to further their agendas?
People hide their fear, but it’s there. As society becomes more inclusive, more politically correct, the fear festers. It’s Christmastime and there is a need to be afraid, about what’s really fearful.
Fearful that corporations run our governments, who don’t serve in the best interests of their citizens.
Fearful we’re more worried about apps, vacations, eating out, fashion, and entertainment than about the environment.
Fearful that a lack of respect for each other has lead to arguing, bickering, even, as we’ve seen, death.
Fearful households are sagging under the weight of their debts, countries are struggling to stay afloat.
Fearful poverty, hunger, inequality, injustice, and war are still accepted.
Fearful in a world of constant connection, we seem further apart than ever.

Police are hired to protect and serve.
Governments are elected to govern.

Kindness and compassion are a language understood by all, we need to remember how to speak it.

We all want to change the world, but not enough people want to change. Waiting in line for a new iPhone, or Christmas wrapping services, or Drake’s new store, concert, movie, restaurant, etc. we have the power in our wallets – stop waiting and stand up for something that will be a positive change.

Sometimes there’s too much going on to see what’s really going on.
As we grow older, wouldn’t it be better if we got slightly less stupid?
This has all happened before and it will all happen again…history doesn’t have to be a broken record.