Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Who's Your Master?

Being of Eastern European origin, I tend to be opinionated.
However, due to my upbringing in Canada, I have been able to actually see other peoples points.

Historically, romantic marriage is relatively young.
Maybe only a century or so old.
Prior to this, marriage was essentially a business arrangement. Women were not much more than chattel, in some cultures less than.

So, the idea of arranged marriage to me, as a modern woman is foreign.
Although, in my mothers dreams, she certainly would have liked to have had the power to choose a husband for me, regardless of the fact that she sucked at choosing one for herself.

The year before last, I taught ESL courses in child development.
Many of my students were of Far Eastern descent.
During our discussions around family, and children, I had the opportunity to ask some questions of women who (most of which) were in arranged marriages.
The women I spoke to were pragmatic, and grew up knowing the score where their marriages and lives would be concerned.
The more I spoke with them, the more I understood where in the right circumstances, an arranged marriage had more of a chance to survive than a "love" marriage.

Love marriages are full of emotion, and "I wants".
It's about what makes us happy personally, without the support and pressure of family expectations.
It's not so much about sacrifice, family, compatibility in life, expectations, and level of life.
While I was thinking about this, I ran across this entry at "Procrastination" from 2003 arguing the pros and cons of arranged marriage.
It's an interesting discussion, and while I'm too conditioned to accept the concept of arranged marriage for myself, I can certainly see it's merits.

It's an interesting discussion.

While arranged marriage is not for me (too late for that anyway), I can see the point.
The same way that I can see the point of women who wear Hajib and say that they are more free than women who dress in contemporary clothing because they are not slaves to fashion and fad.

But in the end, we're all slaves.
Be it to fashion, religion, family, or to love.
It all depends on who your master is, no?

Monday, January 30, 2006

Another Roadside Memorial

I kind of like roadside memorials.

I remember as a child driving by them in the former YU, and thinking and wondering about the person who died at that spot.

But then, I'm someone who also reads the obits in the weekend paper and reads about the love and pain expressed by family members, as well as a synopsis of the persons life.

Is that morbid?

To be a stranger who will read about your death, and for a moment think about you, and your life, and the people who loved you, and hope that you're in peace.

I kind of like roadside memorials.

There seems to be some discussion around a plaque in the memory of Tahir Khan the cab driver who was tragically killed last week.
Some poll was taken asking residents if they would mind a plaque put up in prestigious Rosedale, on the corner of Whitehall Road and Mt. Pleasant, where Mr. Khan died.

For some people, Mr. Khans death was symbolic of the typical Canadian immigrant.
Someone who works hard, and sacrifices in order to achieve the Canadian dream, and become a citizen of Canada.

76% of residents polled apparently want no part of the plaque.

I'm not surprised.
Who wants a plaque commemorating the death of a Pakistani immigrant cab driver in Rosedale?
Especially when he was accidentally killed by boarding school brats.

Certainly not the snotty residents.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

When did Oprah get to be the last word on everything?
Did I miss something?
Isn’t she a Talk Show Host?

Don’t get me wrong…I mean, if Oprah’s Book Club can get hosers to read “The Bluest Eye” by Toni Morrison, I think that’s great…but holy shit, man!
She’s a talk show host, not God.
Not St Joseph.
Not Mohomed.

I just watched Oprah’s public flogging of James Frey.
I just watched a bunch of people kiss her ass for “bringing this to the forefront of journalism”.
Who the fuck is James Frey?
Some guy who wrote a personal memoir that he sensationalized?
Someone who embellished on his memories?
I’m sorry, but it’s a memoir, people…not news.

For one of the Muppets (asked to come on the show to comment), to reckon it to claims that the Holocaust never happened is just fucking ridiculous.
It's insulting.
That now, if we read a biography or memoir we will not believe again.
It’s all Mr. Frey’s fault.

In times of war, lies in journalism are rampant.
In fact, the old adage:
"The first casualty of war is the truth", is the biggest truth ever told in times of reporting during a state of war.

To flay this writer for doing what many do in the guise of real news, seems like non-news to me.
The real news is that he pulled the wool over Oprah’s eyes.
That seems to be the real issue here.

When did Oprah become the North American conscience?

Obviously, the world of journalism and TVland collectively think that the general public are complete and utter morons.

I must concur...I huffed, puffed and snorted through the whole thing...

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Begging for Charity

I have a pet peeve to pick today, and it's not about the election results.
Our new government is not as bad as it could have been, it's a minority...so they'll have to fight for every cut they'll most probably put forward.

Ok so, onward...
I am not a selfish person and I donate both my time and money to worthy causes.
However, am I the only one who would like to make this decision on my own without being harangued by a Cashier or by some person standing at the exit of a store like a Union Picketer?

This really irritates me.
What ever happened to the donation box by the cash register?
Why is the Cashier obligated to ask me, "Would you like to donate to (large company's pet charity) today?".
"No, would (Large Company) like to donate on my behalf?"

It's not enough that there are sometimes two or three people stationed at the exits of large stores soliciting donations, but I have to dodge those kids stalking me in any mall parking lot to buy their chocolates!

This is the truth.
One Saturday afternoon, I counted 12 different people that approached me for a donation as I ran my errands.
I saw one kid twice!
I said to him..."Didn't I see you in front of Scotiabank two hours ago?"
He got this constipated look on his face and said, "no".
I know it was the same kid.

It's enough already.

If I want to donate, I'll put my money in that little box by the cash register or send it to MY favourite charity and get a tax receipt.

Stop nickel and diming me every time I run some errands!

That's all for now folks...

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Sunday Click-Around

I stumbled across Cardstacker Gallery which, I must say is quite impressive.
Another impressive sight dealing with paper is Robert J. Lang Origami which is also pretty impressive.
I must say that I certainly have never had the patience to get through to the third diagram with origami.

This guy is pretty good with sand. I personally didn't have the patience to sit through the whole video, but it's still interesting to be sure.

Back to paper for a second and check out Napkin Quotes, a project a stay at home dad took on for his daughters. I got this link via Riri.

It's a project that would be really cool if you were a young daughter, a lot of work if you were the Dad...but a heartwarming priceless memory as an adult daughter.

I'm a fan of photography, and Ikon is a blog by Kirk Condyles.
It's a new blog, but I'm looking forward to his photos since my favourite photos are of people.
I can look at photo after photo of people, and never get tired of looking at them. Photos of wildlife and landscapes are beautiful, but start looking the same to me after a few photos.
Chalk it up to being city raised.
People are just more interesting to me.
Even in art.

For those of you who are tortured by dreams, like myself...here is a dream dictionary that is a little less specific than many, and somehow the interpretations seem more logical to me than other dream dictionaries.
Most of my friends know that I have had a love affair with sari fabric for years. I cruise Indian fabric shops for vibrantly coloured fabric like I'm going to a Hindu wedding every weekend.
Here is a gratuitous photo of some of my beloved sari fabric.
Here is an Indian Recipe site.
I haven't tried anything from it yet, but I will.
If any readers have a tried and true recipe for "vare" (sp?) or "Keseri" I would really appreciate an e-mail.

Here is a Cooking by Numbers recipe site, where you mark off what you have in your fridge and it will generate recipes for you.
Also, the Table of Condiments telling you the shelf life of many condiments.

Sean Penn demands to know what asshole took seanpenn@gmail.com?

Last, and maybe least World Jump Day on July 20, 2006 at 11:39:13GMT.
Yeah. Ok.

That's all for now.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Another Episode of "What Were You Thinking?"

"She's pregnant again. I don't know how she's going to manage, especially since the father of her last child is unreliable and doesn't help her."

The Mister: "She's going to have this one?"

Me: "She's got religious convictions"

The Mister: "That's convenient"

Me: "What do you mean?"

The Mister: "Well, what about the conviction of 'no pre-marital sex'? It's funny how we can choose our convictions and sins. What makes her think that she's any less guilty of sin by giving her kids the shittiest life she can give them?"

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Torture of Women

There is no doubt that women endure all kinds of crap to look like...well...what men think we should look like thanks to anorexic, coke fueled models, fashion magazines, actresses with personal Chefs, Personal Trainers and months at a time with 8 hours a day at the gym, and porn.
Women are made to feel as though they have to pump botox into their faces, chemicals into their lips, and silicon into their breasts in order to feel beautiful.
All of this is painful, and expensive shit.
I, being of the modest income variety am limited in what
a) I can afford and
b) What I am willing to do in order to live up to some sort of womanly standard.
Being of Eastern European agricultural engineering stock, my main battle over the years has been with hair.
I have used or tried everything on the market.
Many, many of which did not work.

Oh yes...I fell for those infomercials about the sugar based, spreadable crap that is supposed to work like wax...I fell for it because it was being pushed by a family of Middle Eastern women...and if anyone should know hair removal, they should.

They lie.
They lie like Persian rugs!

I would like to introduce you to an instrument of torture...The Epi.lady.
This was probably the worst experience I've ever had with anything that plugs in and claims to rid me of leg hair.
This little tool of the devil is an electrical device with two flexible coils that go in opposite directions to excruciatingly pull out hairs one by one as you drag it down your chosen appendage.
This is the only thing I own that I have not been able to give away.
Every time I try to give it to someone, it comes back like a boomerang within a day or two, with the trier-outers' lip trembling at the memory of their date with The Ep.ilady.

It still sits menacingly in the cupboard under our sink in the bathroom securely subdued in the fake leather pouch it came in.
I don't think that they make the model I own anymore...I think that perhaps the legend has instilled fear and nightmares in little girls all over the world.
But trust me girlikas...it existed.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

It's when I read about happenings like this , taking away certain peoples' personal rights starts looking reasonable:

"A San Ramon couple who police said left their 5- and 10-year-old sons home alone -- but got a dog-sitter for their puppies -- were arrested Wednesday after celebrating the New Year in Las Vegas for five days."

"The couple, who police said may have left the kids home alone before, remained jailed Wednesday night in lieu of $200,000 bail each. They refused media requests for interviews."

"The 5 year old is autistic"

""It makes me feel unloved, put it that way," Joshua (the 10 year old) told The Chronicle"
No. shit.
Are we bringing back stonings any time soon?