Monday, December 27, 2010

I've been asked how come I won't blog about my beliefs as one of Jehovah's Witnesses. This is an excellent and valid question which I truly relish the opportunity to answer. Sure it might seem like the perfect way to dispel some of the common (and many!) misconceptions about us Witnesses, and yes, I have considered this, many many times in fact, considering that I do invest a considerable amount of my time blogging, ok, forgive the pun. But seriously now, the more I thought about it, the more misgivings I would have, this reluctance stemming from fear - fear that I might inadvertently misrepresent our organization in any way and that alongside posts on the particulars of my everyday life, our message, that is truly of the utmost importance, would be trivialized, or that anything else on my blog, anything at all, might detract from the information presented.

Of course, I could always set up another blog, the sole and express purpose of which intended to disseminate Bible "Truths," but it still wouldn't be the right nor proper medium or means, since the time-tested method of preaching from house-to-house that Jesus Christ set the precedent and actively and zealously engaged in himself and later on instructed his followers to do the same, remains as the main and has proven to be the most effective way by far to convey our message - an activity that each and every single Witness, without exception participates in on a regular basis.

It's not a question of being resistant to change or a stubborn refusal on our part to adapt to our ever-evolving world. As a matter of fact, we fully utilize advancements in technologies to further our message, maintaining state-of-the-art printing facilities in key locations around the globe, instrumental in the production of Bibles and Bible-based literature including the most widely-read and distributed (by house-to-house) publication in the world, The Watchtower. (All publications are available too in other multimedia formats such as MP3, CD-ROM, DVD,etc.) No minor feat indeed, everything funded by voluntary contributions and accomplished entirely by volunteers, and yet, all credit for this achievement is ascribed to whom it duly and exclusively belongs, God, in imitation of Jesus Christ who also directed all glory to his Heavenly Father.

Moreover, to complement our preaching activities, weekly meetings, which feature in part, Bible discourses, are held at places of worship called Kingdom Halls located all around the world. Assemblies and conventions which also follow a similiar program of Bible-based talks, symposia, etc. are held periodically as well at larger venues - all open to the public, monies never solicited as this would be tantamount to "peddling" God's word, which goes contrary to Bible directives.

Therefore, I honestly believe that if I were to begin to write about my beliefs on this existing blog, I might downplay the importance and sanctity of our message and furthermore, to set up another blog exclusively to the same end of getting our message across, would just be redundant and superfluous, serving no real and worthwhile purpose other than to hyper-emphasize Biblical topics already adequately expounded and thoroughly explained in our publications distributed through our door-to-door ministry.

As such, all issues to be addressed in this blog will continue to be mainly secular in nature, however, any request made by anyone expressing the desire to pursue random Bible discussions or even systematic Bible Studies with myself will be entertained, to be handled by myself personally and/or my husband as deemed appropriate or as the circumstances require, arrangements for other qualified Christians to contact and call on such interested ones will be made. Thanks!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Step up or step out?

A certain author/authority on writing whose name exactly I unfortunately forget (sorry!) said in effect and not necessarily in so many words, that "writing is probably the most useless profession unless one actually writes about something worthwhile." I honestly must say that I couldn't agree more. And yet, the past couple of weeks found me blogging about my compulsive shopping habit with posts like "My Exploits into Retailville," "Galliano Bags" "Canada Goose Obsession," etc., which *some* found to be "annoying" - a rather stinging comment, the honesty of which, though, I actually truly appreciate and is something I'm graciously accepting in a wonderful display of sportsmanship because it's too late now anyways to retract my words when I said that "I welcome criticism, constructive or otherwise." So, I've taken up the challenge to step up (or step out!) and write about weightier and even controversial things, although, I will NOT apologize for my most recent "metro" installment ;) - even my "worst critic" said that that one was pretty good! Now, I had promised that I would write something editorial-worthy, but that was probably too ambitious a promise to make because I can, in the words of one of my favorite writers, Jessica Zafra, only "do so much bluffing" - a sentiment I share! And because I actually have no idea what the world's present state of affairs is like right now, although again, I can confidently venture a safe and accurate guess summed up in merely two words: it's bad! (But, oh, apparently, Wikileaks is exacerbating America's really unfounded, hence called, paranoia complex, these days - Dude, I *like* know that much!) And so instead, I wrote some prose on a topic dear to me and very close to my heart, uh, next to shopping, of course, namely, writing! I Kinda lost Kumar there when, in response to his question in the middle of the night as to what I was writing about,"this time," I said "writing." "You're writing about writing" He neatly recapped - more of a statement than a question - slightly confused, his mental faculty still somewhat fogged up from sleep. "Yes" I chirped, after which he shook his head, non-committaly mumbled something incoherent but what I think, in retrospect, remotely sounded like "you're nuts" and then rolled over and went back to bed...

On Writing - a Love Letter...Seriously!

I can't believe that already three months had elapsed since my mom's passing. Thank God for this blog! As I had explained in the past, it had and continues to serve as a way for me to cope with my grief, as some kind of distraction, the writing, that is. There's an actual term for this whole process - *sublimation* - as coined by Freud, where basically, one diverts the more natural self/other-destructive inclination and takes all the negative emotions within ones' self and channels it into something constructive and worthwhile. In my case, instead of, I don't know, plotting some evil but to my credit, intricate, heist or at the very least, losing all inhibitions and dancing on top of tables (!) (that was a joke) I wrote and wrote and by the same token, my brother took up playing the guitar again (and songwriting!) and played and played. And while we both personally derived comfort from these activities, by far, the best thing ever that came as direct result from this, were the priceless smiles we got out of mom - my mom - who by profession was a nurse, and had worked as one her entire life because as she would so self-deprecatingly say, "that's all I knew how to do." She was obviously quite pleased to see that at thirty-eight and thirty-three years (young!) respectively, my brother and I, her two able-bodied children out of three, seemed to have found our true (?) callings, our vocations, as we took turns entertaining (and amusing!) her on her hospital bed with the products of our sublimation - with my brother strumming away and serenading my mom with his original compositions and me reading out loud to her, maybe mincing some of my bolder words, some of my second-rate prose! She loved it, so much so that, once, obviously influenced by her cocktail of painkillers, she (proudly) introduced me to one of the staff as a writer! But I didn't dare burst her bubble then and there, I mean, how could I cast another pall over her already pitiable condition? It was only later and well out of her earshot, that I explained to the nurse (who seemed quite impressed!) what my mom had meant, and in what capacity I actually wrote or write (lol) namely, authoring this silly *personal* blog. Needless to say, with my mom being completely computer illiterate, my explanation of what a weblog was went right over her pretty head, but it didn't matter, though, to her I was a writer, "point final" and my mom's maternal loyalty & devotion to us kids
made me both smile and bleed inside...

What constitutes *writerhood* anyways? Try Googling it up and your screen will be inundated with inordinate amounts of info. The opinions vary & differ and are subjective, of course - some argue it involves having published a certain amount of material, others assert that it simply means loving to write and having the ability to string words together into coherent sentences. I won't even try to offer up my two-cents' worth - no, I can't count myself among the company of the literary elite, well, not yet! But I will venture a guess: that writerhood is somewhere happily in between where someone meets those two conditions. To whose opinion I will readily subscribe, though, are of those who recognize as fact, that, all writers - aspiring or established, fledgling or seasoned - contend with self-doubt every now and then if not all the time and that writer's block is a real and not just an imagined insidious affliction marked by a drought and interruption in the flow of creative juices! But probably the cutest fact of them all - in my opinion, at least and my personal favorite - is that each writer has her/his own unique and distinctive "voice" - how true!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Space FB

These past few weeks have been all about rediscovering things/people, it seems. From writers/authors to singers, and most recently, a homegrown Montreal boutique/designer called Space F(rancois) B(eauregard). When his Les Cours Mont-Royal location was taken over by another retailer, a few years back, I was brokenhearted, to say the least because to purchase his clothes meant paying a visit to his other still-existing boutique along St-Laurent - hardly convenient and quite the undertaking for a mother of two little ones. What you've got to understand is, come wintertime when you're indoor bound, malls become "the" hangout place. And why not? With lots of free parking, those best-kept secret family rooms which you never knew existed until you became a parent yourself, the foodcourt, etc., all under one roof in a perfectly climate-controlled environment? Now compare that to pushing along those clunky contraptions called baby strollers and negotiating slushy sidewalks, jampacked with other pedestrians whilst exposed to the elements? It's a no-brainer. So for the past years, putting my kids' comfort before my own, I've relinquished being understatedly fashionable decked in FB, in favor of the convenience of the mall with their very commercial & cookie-cutter boutiques:(

The other day, Kumar, mentioned to me that he saw a nice coat for me at Space FB. "What do you mean"?? I asked, bewildered as I swung around to face him. "Were you around St-Laurent"?? "No" he replied, " Les Cours." "No.Way. What do you mean? Didn't they close years ago"??? "Yeah, but they've re-opened last summer." My jaw dropped, "And you're just telling me this now, months after the fact"?? I demanded. "Well..." he shrugged, a bit sorry for having opened his mouth...

So I made a mental note to check the boutique out at the next chance I would get. That chance came a few evenings ago. After dropping off the kids' at Grandma's and heading downtown with the intent of meeting Kumar after he got off work to have dinner somewhere, I found myself conveniently at the mall, with plenty of time to kill. So I made that famous beeline, well, no, actually I had to look for the boutique.
Sure, it had re-opened alright, but at the obscure Northern end of the mall, that unfortunately doesn't see too much traffic. I walked into the modest-sized minimalist boutique that must occupy an area of around two hundred square feet, max. And it took me about two minutes to go through their entire winter collection in dark shades of black, grey, blue and browns, predominantly in a cotton stretchy blend material, interspersed with a few numbers fashioned out of tweedy heavier fabrics. If I honestly had my way, I would've bought everything in there, but especially from having been set back a couple hundred bones by the famous (and ridiculously ubitiquous) Canada Goose that Kumar got me, I settled on one LBD that fit me like a glove and that had been marked down to $29.00! In chatting to the sweet, quippy and petite Cristina, who was minding the store all by herself, and who turned out to be Filipina, also, I learned that Francois Beauregard, really does cater specifically to petite women of slighter proportions (my euphemism for diminuitive persons like me!) but by no means limits his creations to fit only the vertically-challenged! Cristina asked me to get the word out, that Space FB is back at Les Cours Mont-Royal and I promised that I would. So here goes: please support local designer Francois Beauregard! If I'm able to persuade even just one person, I would be delighted to know that I'm able to effect change at least in a little way through this even littler blog....


Must I chronicle and document my entire life on this blog, I've been asked...the answer is this: Yes, I must, but know that this all but skims the surface...

To Kumar my hapless and yet willing *victim*...thanks for pleading my case and championing my a world of variables you are my constant!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Thank you!

Last week I got a short pm on Facebook from my good girlfriend Candice wanting to know two things: 1.) Whether we were free Saturday (yesterday) and 2.) Did we like oysters. Well, Kumar and I, we will pretty much eat anything, but to be completely honest, I might have had some very slight misgivings about the oysters, I mean, it's not necessarily your everyday fare, but we relished the thought of the company of Candice and her husband Irvin's, their two beautiful children's, Stella and Kingston who are roughly the same ages as Maya and Jaden, and her lovely parent's, and yes, we were free!

So as what usually happens when we get invites on a Saturday, I packed the kids into the car and picked Kumar up downtown after he got off work and then made our way all together to the de la Cruz' cozy home in St-Hubert. Upon arrival thereat we were greeted by the wonderful pervasive smells of Irvin's (who is a professional chef!) cooking. He was still in the middle of cooking up a storm while Candice' other guest Anabelle, who I had met once before, was shucking the oysters away. About forty-five minutes later we were gathered (and drooling!) around an amazing and beautiful spread of predominantly Asian delicacies: Irvin's own recipe of traditional Filipino "Lumpia" or eggrolls with a sweet chili dipping sauce, a pile of the steamed oysters, doused with soya sauce and scallions, Chinese dumplings, jumbo coconut shrimp with a sweet and zingy marmalade-wasabi dipping sauce and what might have seemed a bit incongruous beside the rest of the dishes but worked so perfectly to clean our palates between delectable mouthfuls of everything else, the classic Italian staple of tomato, bocconcini & basil salad, pre-tossed with a *reduced* balsamic vinaigrette, and then beautifully arranged...

All that (lol) just when I thought we were going to be slurping on oysters and downing shooters all evening, I mean that would've been perfectly fine, too, are you kidding me?! But that spread, well that was one insane treat and a half!!!! Irvin, you've outdone yourself yet again, and all other credit goes to Candice for making it possible for you to do your magic in the kitchen. Thank you, guys for your warm hospitality. We love you all so much!!!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

M BRGR, etc...

Now that Jaden and I aren't so attached at the hip anymore and that I am no longer his sole source of nutrition and that he has sprouted his first molars and finally eats neat little mouthfuls of our steak and potatoes (and fish & rice!) staples, I've been enjoying a measure of freedom and have been taking full advantage of grandma's willingness to take care of the kids for us. Yesterday, I decided that it would be a perfect night for such an occasion, to go downtown and meet Kumar to enjoy a much tamer and toned down (as parents!) "night on the town." Now how's that for spontaneity? lol, I try! But of course, I had to kill time in the meantime, so I thought I'd go shopping, lol, how convenient!!!

We've been meaning to try M BRGR for awhile now, and while for some reason all of my other restaurant reviews or references to them have always been of the more chi-chi upscale ones, M: Brgr is totally worth blogging about for a mid-scale specialty (burger) resto. It's a very cool place that you wouldn't feel embarrased to take friends from out of town to, to just hang or even watch the game. When we walked in, Kumar and I were greeted by a friendly and pretty seating hostess - and of course, like anywhere else, reservations are recommended, especially if you're coming with a group of friends, luckily, we didn't get turned away, but the first seats that became available were by the bar. "Do you mind sitting at the bar," the seating girl asked, and Kumar and I looked at each other and shrugged, "No" we replied and immediately were led to the bar, I thought it'd be cool to pretend that we were strangers and entertain each other all evening with the worst ever pick-up lines we could come up with, but I kept getting distracted by the other resto's hpatrons passing by that kept brushing against my brand *spanking* new Canada Goose and right when I was about to lose it (lol) the sweet seating girl (God bless her!) approached us to tell us that an actual table was free, and so we transferred. Yaayy!

Now perusing through the menu at first can be a bit overwhelming, but you quickly realize that you're supposed to create or build your own
trademark hamburger: you start off by choosing the basics composed of the patty, e.g. AAA, vegetarian, etc., next, the bun, e.g. brioche,
whole wheat, etc., then the cheese - you get the idea, and then comes the more interesting extras with which you get to let your creative juices flow to personalize your burger - things like fresh horseradish mayo, grilled portobello mushrooms, um...for the life of me I can't remember the choices off the top of my head...anyways, by default the burgers come with LT and pickles, and, oh, then there are the crazy expensive extras you can have added on too, like truffle shavings if you so fancy...

Also, for ease of ordering, if you're pressed for time, and can't be bothered to construct a burger and for cheaper, too, I may add, you could always just have the classic all dressed "Big Zac" which as the name implies, is like a Big Mac, but only because with two patties, it's humongous, otherwise, in all other respects, there is simply no comparison, lol. There's also the "Little Big Zac" with just one patty which is what I had since I'm not as much as glutton as Kumar is, haha. For sides, Kumar had French fried onions which he thoroughly doused with Tabasco and scarfed down by the forkful while I had the sweet potato fries which is a nice departure from the regular variety. They were
awesome, and I decimated them leaving all but, let me see, one, two, three, I think it was, fries that came in the largish bowl/ramekin thing they were served in. It's funny, because we like to believe that sweet potatoes are healthier, well, they probably are, uh, steamed, that is, nevertheless, given the choice between the regular fries and them I think they still are a tad healthier lol, like the lesser of two evils, I mean, I don't think I've ever had a cleaner colon than as I write hahahaha...

Our waiter went out of his way to ask the bartender to make Kumar a blackberry mojito, which the guy recommended, at Kumar's asking. Needless to say, it was wicked. We kinda thought of trying one of their desserts: a freshly baked deep-dish chocolate chip cookie topped with vanilla ice cream -how sick is that? But we were simply too full by then, so maybe next time! Yup, so the food was awesome, the burgers were *mean*, succulent and juicy, the buns fresh, the sides addictive, the staff attentive and friendly, the decor, simple and wall was hung with a panoramic sepia photograph/wallpaper/mural of Montreal, which I thought was London (hahaha) at first, but as Kumar pointed out, was in fact, Montreal, duh...all in all, I'll give M BRGR a whopping (not whopper!) 9 out of 10.

Allow me to conclude my post with more Canada Goose obssesion. Yes, having become so sensitized to them by now, it's crazy to see how many I had spotted last night within a span of so much time and space, the mall was teeming with kids wearing them, I mean the ratio must have been 1:5. I saw a lot of bombers which seem to be extremely popular among the younger set and a few ladies here and there in anoraks and parkas of both the "Expedition" and "Montebello" styles to be specific but none in my "Resolute" (hah!) which I had previously explained at length is more utilitarian. I'm glad that at least for now, I'm still relatively original in the midst of this totally ubiquitous fad! Yes, I heart my "firefighter/constable" parka - it gives me an air of authority, that the all five feet of me, otherwise a Nice Weekend, everyone...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Let me guess, Canada Goose?

OK, so I really, really heart ♥ my Canada Goose from Kumar. So much so that these two very unfortunate outcomes of that fateful-flash/freak-snow-show around two weeks ago which led me to #1.) break my record Facebook "fast" of two months and "diss" "Mother Nature" herself on my status update, and far worse, #2.) break my own innocent child's spirit by telling her how I thought that snow was Winter's brat child (well, maybe not in so many words!) most likely wouldn't have happened if I had my parka at the time. I mean, I've never ever been so toasty warm in such frigid Montreal weather! I'm telling you, who cares if I look like I'm ready to put out fires or arrest someone?! Warm is totally the new black!

I know, I know, I had promised that I would move on to another subject but this apparently seems to be of interest to a lot of people. In fact, quite a few of you (besides, of course, my loyal followers which I must always acknowledge first!) had stumbled upon my post when Google turned it up along with the volumes of info out there after searching "Canada Goose and counterfeit/fake" and shockingly even elicited an actual comment... or two - awww, thanks, guys! Allow me to redirect you though to a more professional and journalistic take on the matter - this article's very informative, terrificly written and relatively objective as opposed to my post which was slightly/heavily influenced by virtually impossible to control and just naturally carelessly calculated female hormonal surges/shortages and not to mention by the less than seamless interplay of other naturally-occuring body chemicals like serotonin and endorphins that vacillate between abounding and dangerously low levels in my brain (which I fruitlessly attempt to regulate and create a semblance of balance of with scary amounts of chocolate and negligible increments of exercise!) and of course by some external factors as well - a dizzying recounting, in part, of my (continuing) Canada Goose adventures. Just enjoy that other article which was written by a man, not subject to this madness:)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Canada Goose - Chalking it up to experience and one happy ending, blah, blah, blah...

So in my impatience, frustration, desperation, *naivete*, downright stupidity, (and need for instant-gratification!) I ended up ordering a Canada Goose online, through some random site after not being able to find any in my size anywhere in the city! I figured for 252.00 USD I was getting a really awesome deal for the real McCoy. Of course, they processed my card upfront, but because I've never had any previous bad experiences buying stuff over the Internet, I didn't think of it as a cause for too much concern when after two weeks after placing my order, it was still "pending." And right away, after logging a follow up ticket, I heard back from them with a tracking number "profusely" apologetic for the delay and "pleased" to inform me that the parka had been shipped out. So again, my excitement began to build!!!

So, it arrived last Thursday at the office where I had it sent to since no one's home to receive the package during the day anyways, and without wasting another minute after claiming it from Bessie, tore it open in front of a puzzled and curious Sema & Sheryl only to find out that I had ordered a men's parka by mistake!!! And to top it off, the thing was sooo fake with the funny looking fur ruff around the hood and its obviously inferior overall craftsmanship, having been shipped out fresh from probably some underground black market operation in China! I stuffed it back into the bag it came in and didn't look at it again. Yesterday, I decided to take the parka home in case Kumar might be interested but of course, he turned up his nose to it (although it did fit him like a glove!) having both a real bomber and a vest which he got through a special *package* exclusive to Harry Rosen (which is an authorized retailer of CG) employees only, of course, and excluding greedy wives, too!!!

I ended up checking out Canada Goose's *official* website, which I really should have done from the get go before I even toyed with the idea of getting one online, and read up on a whole section the site devoted to the subject of counterfeiting - a "scourge" as the company called it that they've had to contend with lately (and sadly something that all "iconic" brands must deal with) brought on by the recent exponential rise
in popularity that the brand (that has been around for half a century now) has been enjoying. I felt rotten for having inadvertently purchased a knock off! I promise, it was unintentional! I never wanted a fake jacket, for first of all, who knows what it's been stuffed with, yuck! I just couldn't find the exact color, size, and style I wanted this late into the season when only odd colors like canary yellow and sizes are left available and after finally having made up my mind that the jackets are the gold standard in outerwear, when it comes to functionality, the real purpose of the jackets (before they took the streets of all major temperate cities by storm) being intended for use under extreme Arctic weather and that, I, of course, *must* have one! Hey, if they're good enough for them Arctic expeditioneers, they're good enough for me! That's why I had resorted to purchasing online where they seemed to be readily available. I should have known better! Anyways, I'm returning the fake at my own expense, and will be getting a refund from the rogue site, if they give me a hard time I'll just threaten to blog and expose their cheating rears, whose activities adversely impact us. I am very
intimidating, you know, all five feet of me!

Feeling bad for me, Kumar asked me why I looked so dejected last night as I walked out the door to go and workout downstairs to run off my frustration. No, I wasn't sulking over the silly parka, heck, no, well, ok, maybe partly because of that, among the other far more important matters weighing on my mind, these days. But this morning I got a call from Kumar, asking me whether I liked the "Resolute" model of parka, because that one they had at Stylexchange in my size! The Resolute is a bit more industrial looking with reflectors to ensure that you're visible, perfect for when you're negotiating icy sidewalks in the middle of the night and find yourself in the path of those crazy snowplows and
with loops you could either hang, I don't know, things like jack knives, CB radios, compasses (??) or lipgloss. It honestly looks like something you could probably wear to put out fires with (but still very nice!) without singeing a single (body) hair! Did I want it, he asked. I hesitated, knowing it didn't come cheap, but as their official site also made clear, CG isn't offering any promotions or discounts at this time and that too-good-to-be-true deals such as the one I found, are simply that, too-good-to-be-true! They insist that their jackets are investment items, the quality of which they stand by and guarantee complete satisfaction of. They already have a core market of Arctic experimenters, so they really don't need to lower the price. And so I said "Sure, but wait, isn't it early? Are you on break? I asked "No, I came here straight, 'doing this first thing, for you." Kumar replied and got me my parka, putting an end to the sad and freezing, CG-less existence, I've been leading (lol). My husband's thoughtful gesture brought me to tears! But I also know that, I'm going to have to wear blinders whenever we hit the mall from now on because I won't be getting another coat from him in a good while, and that's totally fine by me! My Canada Goose makes its grand debut tomorrow - man, I've never looked forward to subzero weather like this before!

Friday, December 3, 2010

M(ore) M(etro) M(usings)!!!

11. You know you're Metro when inspite of being stricken with a debilitating case of stomach flu, you're overcome by a nagging sense of social responsibility which compels you to render a public service by sharing an excellent article from your local newspaper on the dwindling number of men who wear ties in an admirable last ditch effort to encourage a renewed interest in the sadly dying age-old gentlemanly art form over Facebook.

This time I'm referring to a good personal friend of ours and co-owner of the fine bespoke tailoring shop of his namesake, Pellegrino Castronovo who is the second runner up to my title "favorite metro" because he's probably the only other one I know (strictly speaking!) besides Kumee!

I've actually been asked why I am such good friends with Peter's better half, Patty, considering the polarity of our ethnic backgrounds. The answer is in fact, quite simple: we both have something in common, namely, Metro husbands! It takes another girl married to a metro man to fully understand the full import of Metrosexuality and the pressure of, in Patty's own words, keeping up with men who are "constantly conspiring to look better than we do!" and not looking like "doorknobs" beside them - sentiments that I totally share and dig!!! But what's probably the most unfair thing about this is, after all that "conspiring," our respective husbands quickly forget about the time they had spent getting dressed in the morning, and carry themselves for the rest of the day with grace reminiscent of that of Fred Astaire - without any awkward fidgeting, yanking at their ties, loosening of their collars, letting out of their waistbands after lunch or (God forbid!) "adjusting of themselves" (lol) !

This "keeping up" poses less of a problem to Patty than as it does to me. Being Lebanese, her more than the usual attention to personal grooming and appearance as compared to her average non-Lebanese contemporary is almost innate and works well to her advantage. If you ever walk into Adonis, you'd think the ladies were having audience with her Majesty, the Queen, rather than with their friendly neighbourhood
butcher for some, I don't know, Kafta or pre-marinated Shish Taouk (??) with their carefully painted faces and perfectly coiffed hair. But that's really not a bad stereotype to have and I can't be critical either of Patty for the time she takes herself to get dolled up, because the end-result is virtually flawless (airbrushed!) perfection!!! As for myself, looking presentable alongside Kumar, admittedly, can present a little more of a challenge and a few times I've had to beg him to "dress down" a bit, but I wouldn't say that I'm that hopeless, either, I mean, I take
care, too, but the time I spend less than expertly wielding my hairbrush in one hand and my hairdryer on the other and fumbling clumsily with my wand of mascara is more or less reasonable, and then again, I have two kids...

I'm glad that Peter had shared that article yesterday highlighting the downhill trend towards overly casual dress that a lot, if not the majority of men these days have taken, even in settings and contexts that normally call for a measure of formality. The overall tone of the piece is sad and you sense the author's nostalgia for a time long past when men simply dressed in a way befitting of "real" men and not boys - a loss that Peter, Kumar, Patty and myself, and no doubt, every other metrosexual (and their better halves!) share and mourn, too...

Thursday, December 2, 2010

t-o-m-o-r-r-o-w, got it;)

When I say that I very much welcome, comments and criticisms constructive or otherwise, I really mean it, even if they are to point out typos, grammatical errors and misspellings, please, feel free to comment away!!! Like I said, it's bad enough that some won't publicly declare that they follow my blog and choose to do so anonymously because they are too embarrased to be openly associated with me in any way, but really, true friends, well, they're supposed to care enough to tell you that your fly is open or you've got something stuck between your teeth or (more importantly!) tell you that you've misspelled a word, so can I count on you guys for that? You see, I'm not a very good speller - it's no wonder that I've always fancied myself as being Lois Lane working for the Metropolis' Daily Planet and would you look at that!!! I did end up marrying my Clark who wears non-prescription faux horn-rimmed glasses "just for fun" because he has 20/20 (super) vision and has no inkling as to how it's like to be practically legally blind because of a dumb genetic predisposition towards bad eyesight as a Filipina. I'm seriously considering to get an eye laser procedure done, and while I'm at it I might as well get a tummy tuck, too for my post-two-babies stretchmarky belly. Whenever I tell Kumar this, he tries to score brownie points with me by telling me the lamest cliche that he loves me "just the way I am," but I know he just doesn't want to dole out so much moola. I've reassured him though that I will get the latter thing done once I finally find a plastic surgeon who will do it, uh, pro-bono....

So, about the spelling thing, today, no, I mean, yesterday, I spelled the word "tomorrow" (confused yet?) with two m's. That's pathetic. Do you know why? Because t-o-m-o-r-r-o-w isn't even on the list of the one hundred most commonly misspelled words, which means, the majority of the English-speaking world's population has absolutely zilch problem poperly spelling the word, making me a sorry exception. Now, as much as my poor spelling skills is a mental deficiency, so is it an attitude problem...I think the use of spellcheck tools is *beneath* me (lol). Hence *this*. But, they say not to be "independent when it comes to spelling "independent," and ask "help" to know that it's spelled with an "ent" or "don't show your ingnorance" by suffixing it with "ence" (lol), so I might have to adjust my thinking. Gosh, I love play on words (and Freudian slips!!!) But in my defense to yesterday's slip-up, at least I caught my own mistake, it did look kind of weird staring at it on my Ipod (from which I write most of my posts, which is supposed to be upgraded to an Ipad courtesy of my most handsomest hubby wink, wink!!!) and at least I can spell Mississauga...I pride myself in the fact that I had that down pat from day one, or grade two, can you???

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Re: The Lacoste belts. For the record, no, it's not some kind of black/grey market or "back of a truck" operation I'm involved in here. It just so happened that a friend of mine works for a company on Chabanel (that normally doesn't sell to end-users) that had a sample sale over the weekend. I had explained to my friend that (as she already very well understands!) it's unfortunately quite the undertaking to lug a pre-schooler and a reluctant toddler to these kind of things all by myself, but I was really interested in the belts for Kumar. So what she did was that she so kindly brought the sale to me! At $20 a piece, Kumar ended up getting four and I ended up getting one (measly) belt for myself to make it a nice round figure owed. I got a gorgeous medium width genuine patent leather one in mustard yellow, reversable, the flipside being canvas with the same leather trim, a handsome brushed stainless steel buckle with a "lacoste" cut-out - I'm like totally pitching!!!

Because my friend had been nice enough to bring me the goods, I mentioned to her that if she was looking to sell more, I thought I might have a niche market for her so she put a lovely assortment together for me from which my friends can choose from - sizes aren't 100% guaranteed to be available, but they have quite a bit in stock.

So that's the skinny on the whole belt thing. So, no, I don't work for the mob, Chinese or otherwise, nor the Japanese Yakuza, thank you very much, the last thing I need is to be served up a malotov cocktail! The belts are authentique and my supplier's legit. And finally, let's exercise discretion and definitely not on company time:)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tomorrow's Wednesday. I love Wednesdays 'coz it's Kumar's day off. Every Wednesday I get driven to and from work, and he likewise drops off and picks the kids up from the daycare (for a change!) ahhh, life doesn't get any better than that! And on an especially good Wednesday (sadly too few and far between) he'll even cook - of course, that's if popping fish sticks in the oven and preparing instant rice & frozen veggies counts as cooking, well, in my book it totally does!!!

"Hey, do you want to do lunch tomorrow?" Kumar asked me earlier this evening, "Sure" I replied, "That's a great idea, babes, since we do have a great deal of catching up to do!" I continued. "What's that supposed to mean???" He demanded, feigning surprise, and then we both burst out laughing at the "absurdity" of having to book lunch appointments with each other so we could actually sit down and talk (sigh).

However, now, in retrospect, what was so funny about what I had said, isn't communication king??? Well, it's supposed to continue to deluge tomorrow, I hope we won't have to take a *raincheck*...

On a crummier note, pretty bummed out that we won't be going for dinner with friends at Chuck Hughes' Garde-Manger tomorrow as planned. Speaking of appointments, one of Kumar's clients made one at the last minute to shop with him for tomorrow evening, and that's the main reason why we can't make it. Then there's the weather to consider as well...blah...and our trusted babysitter who's not available either. I'm sad that we won't get to hang and sad that I won't be able to try the much-feted (by my friends) deep-fried Mars bar since I've been looking forward to this for sometime now - gosh, this is all too anti-climactic after all of that pent-up anticipation :( If the ever efficient Miriam gets reservations for all of us again, it'll probably be for July (around the same time I'll be getting my Canada goose) of course, by no means through any fault of her own, the restaurant is just *that* busy...

Ciao!- not that I'm going anywhere, heck, noooo! I need this blog way too much. I just can't believe that I had actually said "ciao" in reply to Sema as she bid me goodbye at 5:00 p.m. today. Couldn't help it if I've always been more of a "hi/bye" person. But after working at Sajo for almost five years running, the Italianisms were bound to rub off on me...eventually :)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Here's some more Canada Goose obsession coming from someone who has yet to receive her online order, the status of which is still "pending" :( (at the rate things are going, I'll probably be receiving my Parka next July during another one of those brutal heatwaves!!!):

It's amazing how a Canada Goose jacket can spark up coversations between people who don't know each other from Adam. That's how popular they are! Showing up last Sunday at one of our family's favorite mid-scale restaurants, L'Academie in Centropolis, Laval, without a reservation, in a lame attempt to be *spontaneous* (lol), we found ourselves behind a long queue of people waiting to be seated as well. Figuring that "this is going to be long," I led Maya to the washroom to wash our hands already to save time. We rejoined Kumee to find him chatting with a another couple. "This is my wife, Aimee," Kumar began introducing us, (Oh, hi! Pleased to meet you, yah-di-yah-di-yah....") "and my daughter, Maya..." (lady crouches down to Maya's level) "You have one stylish, Daddy"!!! She gushed. Then standing back up again and smoothening out (imaginary) creases on her trench with both hands, she blushingly explained to me that they had been admiring Kumee's *Goose*... "Oh, that..." I replied, and never knowing how to graciously accept a compliment (which really just requires a simple "Thank You" in acknowledgement which I have yet to master) I, of course, felt obligated to reciprocate in kind (it's a cultural *thing*, what am I supposed to do anyway? Smugly concur that I'm, uh, hot???) and looking over to her husband, told them how I *liked* his Burberry vest, it's brand being given away by the recognizable tartan lining, made visible with it's collar folded down the way he was wearing it. I heaved a great sigh and related to the lady, the particulars of my recent experience at Stylexchange looking for a Canada Goose for myself and she moaned at how expensive they are. "But they're totally worth it," I maintained, "Yeah" she agreed, "For you and I they're worth it but not for fourteen year old kids, they are! I have two teenagers who've been nagging me since, like, forever"!!! She lamented. I smiled at her sympathetically and then shot a worried glance at Maya, who was fidgeting with the crowd-control rope as I realized that *this* was in our future. The couple got seated and soon after, we were being led to our own cozy booth and upon arrival thereat, I spotted a common coat-tree for our section of the floor. "Huns," I warned Kumar as he was about to hang up his jacket, "I wouldn't hang your coat there if I were you...."

Saturday, November 27, 2010

On Jessica Zafra

OK, the shepherd's pie is in the oven, the kids are calm, it's time for a bit of comic relief, after yesterday's whiny episode...If you haven't yet noticed I would like to direct your attention to a new blog that I have since added to the list of the one's I follow. It's none other than the illustrious Jessica Zafra's official blog who I am *rediscovering* after a long time. Back in college in Ateneo de Naga, when us kids were still memorizing DOS commands and syntax, I would devour any bit of material of hers that I could get my hands fact, I might still have a few *clippings* of her articles tucked away somewhere which I had actually brought over with me from the old country!!!!

The only problem is that, as much as I adore her ridiculously sharp wit and conversely, her blunt sense of humour, I'm afraid to read too much of her work, for fear that I'll just be quoting her half of the time and/or be inclined to plagiarizing which I don't think she would take too kindly to...even if plagiarizing falls under the umbrella of imitation which in turn, of course, is the best form of flattery!!!

But I couldn't resist reading one of her recent posts "Alchemy and Genetics" on what is just short of a rather curious phenomenon of the almost invariably good-looking offspring produced by interracial (inter-cultural) couples, particularly those born of a Filipina "na hindi naman kagandahan" or essentially, of *mediocre* looks and of a man of another racial background equally plain in the looks department. Of course, it hit close to home, being a quintessential example of an ordinary *Pinay*myself, although, my better half, Kumar, who is Sri Lankan is not necessarily too hard on the eyes as my Mom would say!!! Yes between my almond-shaped eyes and his dark complexion, sure made for some babies with unique and killer good looks rarely observed among their purebred peers, who of course are cute in their own right!!! It was good that she even discussed this topic and with a scientific explanation at that that was still almost completely layman friendly and was certainly good to know too what exactly was at play from the time my kids were conceived until I popped them out!!! Totally endorsing Jessica, prepare to marvel at her through the roof I.Q.!!!! "Mabuhay tayong mga pinay"!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Woohoo!!! So I think I survived my initiation into blogging with six months (already!) having had elapsed since my first post and this is probably how, well at least, one of, my (formerly) many daily status updates would have read today, had I not since given Facebook up: "Delighted at the diverse demographic make-up of the visitors of my blog..."

For a while there was a lull in the activity that my blog was seeing. Getting hits only in response to my shameless self-promotion on Facebook and/or by voluntary visits by both my *eight* publicly-declared followers and those of the *anonymous* set who are too ashamed to be *openly* associated with me in any way (Thanks guys, I love you, too!). These days, my blog is actually enjoying visits by people from exotic places such as Newark, Delaware & Laval, Quebec (lol) & by a significant European (Western & Eastern, Scandinavia) representation as well as some random views by people coming from places as far out as Jeddah & Jamaica, no kidding! I might never know whether these ones exited my blog as fast as they stumbled upon it without even reading as much as an article (A, The) (the limitations of my free version of Feedjit!), but it still makes me deliriously, it doesn't take much!!!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

My Continuing Exploits in Retailville

Personally, I'm not a big fan of Chateau. You can tell it's been a long time since I've actually shopped there with the only items I have from the chain sitting in my closet being two identical tube tops, one in bubblegum pink and the other in powder blue, I mean who wears that these days (except Barbie)??? I'd never go to Chateau specifically, although I will walk in if I happen to be by one, just out of curiosity, to quickly check out their wares. But honestly, each time I would find myself greatly disappointed at how everything would be so overpriced (for the quality of their stuff anyways). As for their styles, I don't know, I just think that Chateau is to fashion what Pop is to's the best analogy I can come up with...It's too mainstream - fleeting and fadish, too staged and contrived and can border on trashy sometimes. Definitely not my style. But some people like it and that's ok, too. I'm not exactly one to scour for hours through thrift shops either in search of vintage finds and neither am I "Lolita" - I'm a bit too old for that!

So when I got an invitation to the annual friends and family event courtesy of my friend, Karen, I decided that I'd go during my lunch hour one day last week. When Sheryl & I got there, I immediately made a beeline for the shoe section, and passed rack after rack and mound after mound of clothes...hoping to find something worthwhile. I was giddy with excitement to have unearthed and found me a pair of Jessica Simpson boots! I didn't even know that they carried her stuff! I wasted no time & cashed it to just consummate the retail "deed" already, headed back to the office with Sheryl and then spent the rest of the afternoon mentally rehearsing how I would tell Kumar. We have this practice of letting each other know about our respective purchases. I think it's only fair. Mind you, the boots cost next to nothing, but I've been shopping all month!!!

It kinda helped that Kumar came home in a good mood after having spent the evening, or more like the entire night (the guy got home at midnight!) with his college buddy, Ray, who was in town on business, so at 1:00 a.m on the bed, with our fingers interlaced & our bodies sandwiching Jaden, with bated breath I began: "Oh by the way, huns..."

Kumar: "Yeah"????

Me: "Well, you know Karen gave me tickets to the family and friends event at Chateau..."

Kumar: "Yeah"????

Me: "So I went..."

Kumar: "And"???

Me: "Well, I actually found these Jessica Simpson boots (emphasis on Jessica, Kumar has a thing for her!) they were originally retailing at $275.00 and were marked down to $100.00 and with the ticket...came up to $50.00, would you believe"???

Kumar: "That's a pretty sweet deal you got, princess..."

Aimee: "I know, isn't it, loveski"???

Kumar: "Show me in the morning..."

Aimee: "I will...goodnite, babes!"

Kumar: (had since let go of my hand and had rolled over...)

Me: (Man, I get away with waaay too much!!!)

Next stop, Stylexchange warehouse sale with Patty....

Thursday, November 18, 2010

I was tickled pink to learn that Ryan Reynolds has just been bestowed People's magazine's much-coveted title, "Sexiest Man Alive." I kinda like him, I mean, what's not to like??? Between his boyish good looks and his, uh, sinewy torso??? You know the type - let me see, hunky, virile (lol). But I must say that what I find most attractive about him is his intelligence - "Dude, smart is sexy" - according to Farah. I couldn't agree more....

Here's a snippet of my dream last night: (the scene is in progress) In a weird turn of events, I find myself being the common object of desire of both Kumar & Ryan (???). What started off as a seemingly polite & civil conversation between the two quickly escalates into a rather heated argument, the men are literally at each other's throat, and the next thing I know, they are physically fighting over me!!! They pay no heed to my frantic pleas for them to stop which are barely audible anyways above their strenuous grunting and the sickening sound of the blows they exchange and after what seems like a most grueling eternity of manly grappling, Ryan surrenders in bitter defeat and of course, my baby emerges the victor and staggers towards me at which point I woke up (abruptly) quite bewildered and a bit disoriented and slightly confused as to Scarlett Johanssen's whereabouts during all of this...hmmm...

Clearly, dreams are just totally wack *reruns* in the subconscious, of the thoughts that dominate one's mind during the day!!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Galliano Bags??

Kumar can be such a tease sometimes, I mean, what was the point of calling me at the office just to tell me that the "girls at the store were going crazy" over some "amazing" Michael Kors clothes *package* they were getting courtesy of Harry Rosen and of course exclusive to lady associates working there only, well, other than to make me green with envy, I guess??? Why tell me to "look down at Claudia's feet" (to see the Gucci shoes she's wearing), or that "Cantonese girls are *sick* dressers" bedecked in designer stuff from head to toe??? Or insist that I "accesorize, accesorize, accesorize" if he makes a fuss whenever I come home with rustling tissue-lined parcels??? Well, Kumar, I realize, isn't actually all that bad because while for most men, the only article of clothing they will ever surprise the women in their lives with, is usually limited to the skimpier nightwear variety, Kumar will surprise me every now and then with an actual blouse or sweater or dress, besides the usual chocolate & flowers and whatnot. If anything, I might be a bit spoiled that way - his working in retail (and being metro) does have it's advantages! For example, while I was at home on mat leave, whenever I wanted new clothes and couldn't be bothered to dress the kids, pay an arm and a leg for parking, haul their stroller out of the trunk and hit the mall, I'd send Kumar to pick something up for me. In general, having someone else shop for you is usually a hit and miss undertaking, but this arrangement seemed to work pretty well for us. All Kumar would have to do is swing by Club Monaco (my fave!) next door of Harry's, size up one of his lady retail friends weighing more or less as much as I do, and enlist her help to choose stuff. This system was almost virtually foolproof! But of course, now that I'm back at work and with the kids in daycare, I've resumed shopping for myself.

Now going back to the other day, Kumar must've mistaken my mock chagrin over his news as real displeasure, because he ended up surprising me with a John Galliano bag from Energie Exchange. I really didn't know how to react. I was certainly appreciative of the gesture - the bag itself wasn't exorbitantly expensive, having been marked down to $200 CAD from $500, but it was simply alright - nothing spectacular or wow...Kumar was right, it was something I could use with jeans on a casual Friday, or as a really really fancy (quoting Kumar: "sick") diaper bag but it honestly didn't have anything going for it, and certainly didn't justify the cost. It was similar to a Juicy bag with the grey velour material and some fancy embroidery embellishment on it and PVC handles and pewter buckles. I turned it over again and again, modeled it in front of the mirror and then finally told Kumar that I would mull it over that night as to whether I really wanted it or not and slept on it (the thought, not the bag). The next morning, I decided that the bag was a waste of money & I was actually getting more and more indignant at John Galliano, I mean, where does the designer get off selling a bag for a gazillion-fold more than what it actually cost to make, what, just because he's Galliano??? And I couldn't believe that Kumar had bought into the trap!!! So I told Kumar, to exchange the bag for something nice for himself, reassured him that I appreciated the thought (because he vowed to never buy me anything again!) and I would apply the amount towards my Canada Goose Parka. And that was that.

When it comes to certain things, I do let go of my bargain-hunting, H&M-frequenting self's philosophy (also held by every other penny-pinching style puss): "A real Timex is better than a fake Rolex." A classic Louis Vuitton tote or a Burberry trench, being some of those *certain* exceptions although a hand-crafted, alligator Hermes Birkin bag might be a bit much! Things like the former two, are items that I think, are worth the price and are defintely good investments, think of them as gifts to yourself that keep giving back, you just can't go wrong, and if you get them as gifts from really generous hubbies, dot, dot, dot, EVEN BETTER ;)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Read *somewhere*: Quoting Paulo Coehlo: "Those who have never been wounded in love can never say that they have lived. Because they haven't." I found it cute how some people wear their hearts on their sleeves quoting mush like that and funny too how the author asserts this like it's fact or some universal truth, although I do think I know what he's trying to say: that just as much as one needs to have indulged the physical senses with all things wonderfully perceivable by them, one needs to have *deeply* felt - scaling mountain-like heights of elation and down the opposite extreme to abysmal lows and every other crazy emotion in between to be able to say that one has *lived* and of course what else can wreak so much inner havoc than love, particular one gone sour, bad or downright ugly and/or messy or so I think that's what he's trying to say...whatever..I mean, since when has being able to say that one has lived (fully) ever been contingent on having had one's heart broken???

I can only handle so much emotion, and try to avoid writing about it, or at least sharing it with others when I do. In fact, out of the some seventy posts I have written so far (some four months worth of writing!) there are about five of them that I've never published and have never seen the light of day and remain as drafts, the sole purpose of which being personal, intended for just leaching out, or as my friend Farah puts it, *bleeding*. Yes, There is a measure of comfort to be had in writing about feelings, but never absolution, nor closure. Morever, feelings are abstract, and these days, a bit too confusing for me, and are proving to be too difficult to crystallize in words, so I haven't made any conscious effort to lately. I prefer to write about concrete, tangible things - inanimate objects, like my rubber finger at work or *certain* down-filled jackets, about the everyday, the trivial and the mundane - rarely emotionally-charged, never politically-swayed but sometimes slightly socially-relevant & of course about *people* - my own foibles:) and even Lady Gaga...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

On Dentist' Appointments

Marrying Kumar actually involved marrying his dentist as well, I guess it made perfect sense, just for the convenience of it all, especially when it came to insurance purposes & scheduling, etc...well, maybe not as convenient as having a dentist in the same building where we live (there really is one) but just to think how far they go back: Kumar & Dr. Tenser along with his orthondist Dr. Israelovitch have had this long-standing relationship as the latter two fomed this dynamic duo/tandem (lol) and worked closely together to correct Kumar's overbite and tweak and tweak some more to perfection his smile over no less than *eight* years, yes, eight years!!! (So it really raised some loyalty issues plus they had vested interest - imagine if Kumar were to ever sign a Close Up commercial contract???)

So Kumar got his braces off just in time for our wedding, it's a good thing, too because that would've made for some funny pictures had he not!!! But really, this actually served as an indication to Kumar of the depth of my love for him, I mean the guy wore braces while we were dating, but I saw past all of that (blinding metal)!!! Anyhow, I think it's cute, the friendship we've forged with our dentist and hygienist and even the receptionist, for that matter, over the years and why not? They saw us get married, they saw the birth of our first child, the purchase of our first home, the arrival of our second child, (and most recently, the passing away of my mom) and through routine check-ups, root canal scares and unerupted wisdom teeth extractions!!! I'm especially fond of Lucy, the hygienist, who takes such a personal and what I can sense is a genuine interest in her patients. It certainly makes up for my ob-gyne, who during both my pregnancies treated me like a number, and kept referring me to as either his 9:30 or 11:15 or 15:45! (I guess, like any other job, theirs become monotonous too after awhile! And in retrospect, I think it's better to have been treated as such, I've felt violated enough being *routinely* poked and prodded! Anymore attention than what was due would've been freaky!) I always enjoy chit-chatting with Lucy and after every six months or so, there's always a great deal of catching up to do...only problem is that her questions aren't always answerable by yes or no, signified respectively by a nod or a head shake, so the whole (not necessarily pleasant) cleaning process actually takes a whole half hour longer than it's supposed to.

I usually walk out of there with a clean bill of *oral* health (and a loot bag filled with colgate samplers and Maya with her Dollarama toy!) and I've prided myself in that, but today, I was told that I needed to go back for fillings. "Have I been flossing"??? Just what is that supposed to mean??? I'm (like) freaking out - I don't know even know what I've done differently in the past six months to have deserved this!!! Oh joy!
OK, so this is how it all went down the other night: picked the kids up from the daycare, strapped their resisting bodies into the car, negotiated trafficky and *potholey* Montreal streets and made our way home, got supper going, actually sat down to eat, cleared the table, did the dishes, tidied up the house, gave the kids a bath, mustered up all the energy I had left and *animately* read them a story, and finally put them down for the night - when I come to think of it, this is pretty much what takes place every weeknight with very little variation, so much so that I could almost do all of the above blindfolded - sure, this routine we've settled into with me working gets to me sometimes but there's certainly never a dull moment - especially with Jaden who at nineteen months of age is giving us foreglimpses of how it's going to be like when he actually hits the "terrible two's" and with our pre-schooler Maya firmly believing that she's a princess (I hope that she will come to the realization that she isn't royalty on her own when the time comes because, I do not want to be the one to burst her bubble!)

It's a wonder how I didn't conk out myself within two seconds flat after putting them to bed. I actually had a little more energy to spare to join Kumar who had since taken to the couch and was aimlessly flipping through channels by then...nothing good was on except for Remember Me starring Robert Pattinson of that, uh,*vampire* movie fame and that's exactly why it actually caught our attention, I mean the poor guy, through no fault of his own, has been forever typecast, so we thought it would be interesting to watch Pattinson make a departure from the saga, lose the pasty complexion, to take on a different, more *livelier* role in a *literal* sense. The problem is I can't watch movies like that, that is halfway through, let alone without knowing what they're all about, I need a gist or a general outline of some sort as some kind of frame of reference. So, I ended up excusing myself and googling up "Remember Me," read the whole synopsis, and this time for real used up all of my remaining energy, just trying to keep myself from spoiling the ending for Kumar, but as it turned out it wasn't necessary, by the time I rejoined him, he was out cold too and *snoring* on the couch. I guess, you know you're getting old when, you can't stay up till so late, let alone pull all-nighters, uh, reading or something...

Anyways, for some reason, I got a second wind that night and ended up taking a quick peek at Facebook...I'm actually amazed at how
quickly the whole thing got *old* for me. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I was never into Farmville or any other of their games...I know that would've probably compounded the problem. All I've received so far is a single sincere and the cutest ever plea (hi pauline!) to "please be back on Facebook!?" So, I won't necessarily be making the announcement "back by *popular* demand" anytime soon. Rest assured though that I haven't abandoned Facebook altogether and I definitely don't mean to be a snob, but it's simply because it isn't compatible with my role as a *responsible* mom especially being given to *addictions* like this...


Friday, November 5, 2010

Canada Goose

Right in the middle of the epic heatwave last summer, which, as I said, was "leaving my naturally wavy hair with waaay too much to be desired," I wrote a post on Uggs boots and Canada Goose Jackets. It might have seemed early to be talking about "winterizing" at the time, but as I had emphasized, the post was totally in step with the ridiculously fast moving pace of the fashion industry that "keeps churning out new styles outdating the last trend every milli-second, it seems!" And sure enough, it's only November, which has seen (so far!) all but a light dusting of the evil evil white stuff and already, Canada Goose jackets are sold out, well maybe not completely: I went to Stylexchange yesterday, just "out of curiousity" to see for how much exactly they actually retail: $575 CAD (steep but worth it!) for the long "Chilliwack" coat that was secured with an elaborate and very serious-looking anti-theft device and just short of being literally bolted down to the rack. I've had my heart set though, on getting the "Montebello" parka in black for about two years now, but of course they no longer had any available in my size or color of choice...all they had left were ones in, of all colors, uh, *canary* yellow. "Would you like to try it on?" the canary, I mean, sales associate on the floor chirped, interrupting my pensive interlude and relaxing my furrowed brow: "That's ok," I replied, "I'll wait until you get more black ones in my size" but she warned me that, "It could be a veeery long wait, even Canada Goose, (the company) can't keep up with the demand." "I'll wait," I repeated nicely - was she kidding me? I wasn't about to be coaxed into doling out $500+ for a banana yellow jacket (by a salesperson working on commission, even if I have a soft-spot for their kind, especially for one in particuler:))

Now, quoting my silly self again: "It's a shame that with the advent of every trend, comes the proliferation of imitations - some by rival manufacturers that blatantly copy the styling of the original or by those who run more clandestine operations and try to pass their goods off as the real thing." Yes, even the jackets are being imitated. In fact, I stumbled across a few sites selling some for significantly cheaper - yes, *my* black Montebello parka in XS!!! (God, please save me from myself!!!!) Now, of course, I wouldn't mind saving myself a few hundred bucks, I mean who doesn't even if you're loaded - with money coming out of the, uh, wazoo? But are they real, though??? That's what I would like to know!!!

Monday, November 1, 2010


A recent development involving a person who has since become an unofficial (self-appointed) promoter/literary agent of sorts (lol) of this blog compelled me to write this post. I was mortified that the said shared the direct link to (of all the choices!) an older post on my forays into spa-bliss. Granted, my permission was obtained first but still, I mean, just how much hatred can you have for people to subject them to so much torture making them read about me and the spa??? I'm not sure of how much of it they had actually read before they let out a big yawn and decided it wasn't worth the bother and carried on with whatever it was that they were doing and I couldn't remember exactly what I had written either, for all I know I could've been, er, drunk at the time (haha). So I thought, "let me read it again" (yeah,my own blog post, how weird is that?!) to make sure there wasn't anything painfully embarrasing or even incriminating for that matter - you see, it's one thing when a distant relative living in Germany reads your blog post or a grade school chum you only have vague memories of & had reconnected with just recently through Facebook does...but when a person you work in such close proximity to reads it, well, that just makes me cringe...and want to crawl under a rock.

So as it turns out, there wasn't anything too too bad in the post than as I had initially feared (and again I don't know how much of it was read) except for a quick reference to "funny" disposable underwear & a rather vivid description of a full body chocolate mask (haha). However, I did notice too how I had described the waiting area of Spa Diva as "beautiful," well, my personal aim from the founding of this blog was to be truthful in everything I wrote, and I think I might have fibbed a bit there on that one, not that the place wasn't nice, it was - only in a circa 1995 Zen-ish way, in other words, the place is in dire need of some (or a lot of) updating. Mind you, the service itself was impeccable...but again, depending on how particular you are when it comes to ambience, you could end up being either a bit or very disappointed...(In my case, I was perfectly content with the efficient karate chops to my backside, nevermind the (gasp!) unstreamlined
microfiber couches in the waiting area....)

So I just wanted to take the time now to nevertheless, thank the self-appointed publisher/promoter of this blog for paying such rapt attention to my nonsense - it is a big deal to me considering that said is an actual published writer (something I could only aspire to be) among other things - just one figurative feather in said's hat, so to speak. And also because apparently (as it had been brought to my attention), I had overlooked said on my previous post although, in my mind, I thought the list to be quite
exhaustive in fact, as it was & that I had pretty much covered everyone that needed to be thanked. Well, if this isn't enough and
depending on the outcome of this rather unlikely alliance, I might one day devote a whole blog post or two to the said, but I really,

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Thank You's

We couldn't possibly even attempt to "move on" with our lives now that Mom's ordeal is over and is now resting peacefully without taking the time out first, that is, to express our deepest gratitude to everyone:

To Tom: Thank you for the countless hours (truly priceless gifts of your time) that you've selflessly spent in visiting Mom, strengthening her & allaying her fears. In the end, she might not have made it but your visits were in no way, in vain. Thank you, thank you so much for making us not feel that we were "going it alone!"

To Annette: Thank you so much for making it possible for Tom to have paid those visits and for simply being such a dear friend to us from day one & for loving Maya & Jaden as your own...(need we say more?)

And a huge THANK YOU, too to everyone else who helped "lighten our load" in one way or another, in whatever capacity - from paying Mom those visits as well (even if you didn't know her personally!) and doing actual shifts watching over her (when we felt we had already spread ourselves too thin) to offering to take care of the kids just to give Kumar & I even just momentary but absolutely wonderful breathers (thanks Peter & Patty!) & in many many other (special) practical ways...Thank you for the flowers & the food, food, food!!!! Thank you, too to everyone for your prayers said on Mom's behalf, for the kind & encouraging words expressed in person, over the phone & thoughtfully written out...and even to those who were at a loss for something to say and tacitly conveyed their love & offered their moral support, please know this was all sensed, felt and was very much appreciated...Thank you!

From all of us:)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Chocolate Cartharsis:)

Today I don't want to feign smartness and go on & on on subjects that half of the time, I honestly don't even know the first thing about!!! Today I just want to blog about feelings, you know, strong carnal feelings, hahaha, I'm joking - just feelings, as in emotions, again are these two terms interchangeable? I'm not even sure! But seriously, today, or NOW, that is, I need a chocolate fix...and quick, to up the dangerously low serotonin levels of my utterly confused brain and override the gnawing pain in my chest because whereas before distance safeguarded me & whereas before, indifference provided cover...right now, I'm darn a stupid sitting duck - it's like the worst position to be in and it ain't pleasant so I'll just have me some largish quantities...that should do me some good...don't ask:)

**Progress report: It's been almost a week (and counting!) since I've last updated my FB status. And although I'll still make an odd comment on someone else's here and there, that's quite a step up considering, uh, the low sink that I was in - at least my page is no longer inundated every morning by at least 20 new notifications which I would religiously go through one by one at the crack of every single dawn for the past year or so, while barely awake, through eyes still heavy with sleep, like an idiot, I might add. The number is steadily decreasing and pretty soon it'll fizzle out and my Facebook dependance will die an inglorious death...and then I'll have been cured!

So I don't dream in blue & white anymore, I don't feel as irritable & anxious as I used to whenever I find myself stuck in a non-wifi zone (for longer than necessary) and best of all, no relapse yet...I think this totally merits another piece of chocolate...mmmm...

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


I thought it would be only right to offer up some kind of explanation as to why I'm changing my blog's name. For those who had been following since the very inception of this madness, you might vaguely recall the reason for the original title, but for the sake of the majority who really wouldn't know, and because of my unshakable slothdom, I'll just quote myself: In part, I said: "I reserve Facebook for my little quips and the excess (microblog) - the "and them some" - filters down to my blog," thus the strange title. I have written quite extensively about the (in)famous social network, with regards to my general observation of and personal experience with it - from my initiation to my present addiction to it! And I think that like a lot of harmless things/activities out there that can become addictions, Facebook is not evil in itself. It only becomes a problem when it's indulged in, in excess. There truly is wisdom in the old adage that moderation is key (in everything)!

At first I thought "cold turkey" might be the best way to quit, but it's proven to be a bit more difficult than I thought, so I believe the most effective method to free myself from the shackles of this addiction (omg!) is to wean myself gradually off it and curtail significantly, the time I spend mindlessly and aimlessly browsing through the same. To this end, I have resolved to stop updating my status where my grandiose (haha) one-liners used to neatly fit (e.g " It's hard to keep a stiff upper lip when you're getting it waxed, yeeeeooooowwwwww"!!!). Because that's how it gets out of hand, you know, when "friends" will either "like" and/or comment on them, and then this whole trivial exchange of playful banter ensues and then you check out a viral videoclip and then another and then some random person's entire wedding album of 150+ pics until before you know it, you'd had spent an entire Sunday morning in this pointless exercise. So really my problem is how it encroaches on my precious time, time that could and should be spent doing more important things like, uh, brushing my teeth for example or taking a shower or feeding my kids. This of course hasn't escaped Kumee's notice either, and one evening, unable to contain his irritation any longer, he looked at me incredulously & yelled exasperatingly "Would you get off the computer already and fix some food
for your man, WOMAN???
Of course, that too, made it to my status update and caused quite a stir among my online circle of buddies who thought it quite amusing. Sure, it was pretty funny at the time but by now, I find Facebook is just interfering with my life and I've come to realize that however remote the possibility, it can nevertheless, potentially compromise my happy marriage, no kidding! Now, if that's not reason enough, then I don't know what is! And so before it reaches that point, I'm making the necessary adjustments. I really think that enough is enough!

Have you ever been dumped by someone and was given the lame alibi that it was because the other person felt that you were "too good for him or her" or "that it was his/her fault and that he/she was the problem and not you?" Well, I find myself at the same crux in my relationship with Facebook. Except I get to be the dumper this time around (yes!) I'm breaking up with Facebook (who knew it could be so empowering & gratifying at the same time???) for the same reason - no, not because it is too good for me, but really, owing to the fact that I am the problem, only it's not just a flimsy excuse but is actually a totally responsible and informed decision that I'm coupling with decisive action:) This is a personal challenge and promise to myself, and if I have a shred of integrity left and am able to exercise so much restraint and self-control, then I know I'll be able to make good. So in connection with all of this, since I won't be updating my status with the silly quips or the fantastical one-liners as I referred them to, from now on, this blog will go by "Aimee: The Inside Skinny" haha,I know, don't ask. Well, just because it's literally, in the truest sense of the term, my virtual diary and is a bit personal in nature which I of course, unabashedly share with everyone!

And because I'm addressing you, my readers, directly this time, I wanted to express my gratitude and appreciation for all of your support and avid readership (lol) and I also wanted to let you guys know that I very much welcome comments including criticism, constructive or otherwise, they truly inspire me and remind me that I do have an audience after all, and that I'm not just monologuing half of the time! If I might also add, I warmly invite you guys to "follow" my blog, there are certainadvantages you know to doing so, like you get to be the first to know about new posts??? Haha! I can't say that I don't bite, coz I've been known to, but that's only if you get on my "bad" side...Oh God! So there you have it, guys, thank you, thank you again and until next post!!!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Stella McCartney

I should have known better a few evenings ago, not to disturb Kumar as he was watching his show, Videofashion mens' edition on Fashion TV, especially since it was just to get him to watch a viral video clip of the highlights of Charice's scenes' on Glee that I couldn't wait for him to see. Kumar sternly shushed me to be quiet and motioned for me to join him on the couch - orders that I somewhat reluctantly complied to - I mean, poor me, I had to sit through a full 20 minutes of a relentless parade of relatively perfect male specimens strutting their stuff - it was a decidely difficult exercise to conceal my excitement and keep a poker face (lol) all throughout the visual onslaught on my brain and then it was Kumar's turn to curb his enthusiasm and contain his delight, as a lingerie awards played right after.. Finally, a less uh, "stimulating" program followed. It was a Stella McCartney fashion show marathon, which was pretty neat 'coz I got to see how the designer grew and evolved from her "humble" beginnings to the present. To be honest, I have never paid much attention to her, I had always dismissed her as one riding on the coattails of her father, but after the show, I realized that, she is in fact quite talented in her own right. It made me wonder if she would ever collaborate with H&M, the way some other top designers have, for that would be the absolutely only way I could ever own some of her pieces.

I think it's very unlikely. I'm not too sure whether she usurped Karl Lagerfeld's position as head designer of Chloe or if the turnover was amicable. Whatever the case, if Lagerfeld stil exerts any influence at all over McCartney, she might have been discouraged by him to team up with H&M (not that the idea has even been conceived yet anyway, who knows?). What I do know for a fact though, is that Lagerfeld vowed to never collaborate with H&M ever again. Apparently, the septuagenarian designer most recognizable by the (coolest) high-collared shirts he invariably wears, was quite disappointed that his and the Swedish retailer's rather noble, generous and in my opinion, genius combined effort to make some of his designs available to the masses wasn't realized and never came to full fruition since H&M jipped the general public by only producing a limited number of these pieces. But just as I was getting the warm fuzzies and was actually starting to grow
fond of the illustrious Lagerfeld, I was repulsed at how, as the article I got this info off continued to describe, he was also displeased with H&M for producing his designs in larger sizes as they were really intended for the skinnier set (e.g. waify gamine models whose pelvic bones jut out). And that's actually another reason why I am pretty impressed with Stella McCartney's clothes, in that they are more forgiving and flattering for the real 20-30 somethings of normal build & average proportions.

And so going back to television, we don't have TSN, ESPN nor even the French, RDS sports channels but we do have Fashion Television because as my ever eager (lol) audience should know by now, Kumee is metro. And so again, I couldn't help but smile when Kumee came home all proud recently with a man-purse slung across himself that he had just bought, and in an attempt to inherit the handsome Cole Haan satchel, I tried to convince him that it looked rather er, effeminate, but of course, my better-half saw right through my ploy, besides, he is perfectly comfortable with carrying such an accessory, why shouldn't he be, anyways? I know, I tried! So in the end, we just cut a deal, that I could borrow it from time to time - fair enough? Fair enough!....Have a nice weekend guys!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Disney Saturday

I got free tickets to the Disney Princesses on Ice show at the Bell Center this morning, courtesy of my company (thank you, SAJO!) - the coolest thing about them (besides being free!) is that they were "loge" or private box tickets, where you get the V.I.P treatment complete with snackies and a hostess waiting on you! I mean I could definitely get used to that, as well as to other fun things like valet parking, flying first class, hot towels, trou normands, complimentary mimosas, etc, etc...although I guess, like everything else, their novelty would eventually fade and become ordinary if enjoyed too often as the norm of a privileged & charmed life-style...then one would just be left bored, jaded, disillusioned, wondering, is this all there is to life?! I know I'd be, but until I reach that level (very unlikely) they'll remain as special extras totally worth blogging about!

Obviously, Disney on Ice productions could never eclipse a visit to an actual Disneyland/world, I know, because we were fortunate my parents took my brother & I when we were kids, but in my opinion it might be the next best thing, you still get quite the Disney experience, all in a comfy climate-controlled environment minus the ridiculously long lineups that snake all around the park. For this show, the fairytales are adapted to an hour and a half ice-skating spectacle so in some respects, a bit of the dramatic effect is lost, for example, when the prince kissed sleeping beauty to rouse her from her long slumber, she really gets up in a hurry and wastes no time to join her hero in a special dance-skate number - whereas on screen, we know that the scene is played out quite differently, they kind of linger in the moment: he opens the voile enveloping sleeping beauty's four-post bed, plants a kiss on her lips, she slowly stirs, opens her eyes, yawns, stretches, and then finally gets up (lol) - it is, after all, the pivotal moment of the story & she had been asleep too for a very long period of time! Or I found it a bit disappointing as well when Cinderella disembarks from her grand coach after an equally grand entrance, clad only in a toned down flimsy figure skating-friendly version of the light blue frou frou ballgown (i mean, i like frou!) that I was really anticipating, but then, you quickly realize how both impractical and not to mention hazardous sporting a crinoline could be whilst gliding around arabesque and through those
crazy lifts! - I know one of the svelte skaters literally belly-flopped and had to exit the rink discreetly, the poor girl! So, there are only so many highlights that they can cram into a show of that length, nevertheless, it's still great to see the characters in real life and I pretty much loved everything, from the intricate choreography and the seamless and precise way in which it was performed, the concussion-defying stunts, the special effects, to the whimsical costumes. You see, no matter how commercial Disney has become, it never fails to evoke childlike wonderment, and inspire innocent romance - and sure enough, this morning, when the lights went out and the show began, all of a sudden the very thing that seperates Maya and I at one remove, was completely bridged and voila, I wasn't Maya's mom anymore! I was her contemporary for a wonderful hour and a half and we gasped, ooh and aah'd, giggled, (I) cried and then finally applauded in sheer delight...(encore!)

Shout out to Annette: thank you for the fine company comme d'habitude:)
Also, in case you were wondering where was Jaden during all of this? Of course, flirting big time with the hostess:)))

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Why Jessica Alba?

No, no one has actually outright asked me that, although, I'm sure it must have at least crossed some of my readers' minds and that her rather conspicuous face just being on my blog like that might have elicited a couple of smirks, a chuckle or two, an eye-roll, and perhaps an "ok, there!" like yah, just who does she think she is??? (me, that is) But it's all good, it's all good and granted, it is a valid question that totally merits an explanation of sorts. So then, why Jessica Alba??? After all, she's not representative of me, is she??? No, I don't neccesarily resemble her and uh, vice-versa (lol). For one thing, I'm not as well-endowed, in fact I'm soooo not as well-endowed that I could almost be asexual (lol).

I recall a friend of ours, JP, who had a thing for Jessica, he said that her only "flaw," if you could call it that, was that she was a brunette. So when she went blond to play Sue Storm, he got really excited, no actually, he was floored - to him she had the whole package, she was the whole package. I also remember a segment on Sesame Street featuring Alba winsomely teaching Cookie Monster I believe it was, the meaning of the word "scrumptious," fitting wouldn't you say? Mmmmm, scrumptious, hahaha, poor Cookie was practically reduced to a glob of blue putty in her hands! So she's everything I'm not, but in my fantasy (not fantastical) world, I get to be anyone I want including this superhero/femme-fatalish, not because I ever want to be the object of a cohort of men's lusty desire and a locker room staple (yuck), I just thought it cool (lol).

And so when I was designing my blog and decided that I would post up a picture of some cool female action persona, my search efforts reaped me some very interesting results and possiblilities, unfortunately most of them were decidedly, uh, too provocative and inappropriate, all except for Jessica Alba. As Sue Storm, she seemed sweet and had had to be the tamest one of them all (just like me:)). So there you have it, and I hope that answers the burning (lol) question, why (the heck) Jessica Alba?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Re-setting the Odometer

So I went from believing that the very heavens wept on the day of my mom's passing to thinking that the world would end. Apparently not, for sure enough, the sun rose this morning as it has for aeons, ushering a brand new day - how rude! I carried on as usual - what else does one do in the wake of such a sad event anyways? I went to run an errand and while I was walking, thought to myself, how many people out of the ones I'm meeting had just lost someone or is contending with similar distresses? At a glance, it's hard to tell, it's not easily discernible - not from across the street, across the room nor from across the cash, it is. And then I wondered, who else of these very same people in turn, could be wondering likewise? At face value, of course, it's not readily apparent. And life does go on! I can't exactly assume a fetal position in a corner and sob all day or can I?

Life's tough - sure, we enjoy stretches of halcyons and experience pockets of joy every now and then, but everything in between is just hard.

I'm still waiting for the heart-wrenching or searing or shooting or sharp or whatever kind of pain it is I'm supposed to feel because all I'm feeling right now is still this dull ache in my chest that's been here for months...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

On Death

When mom first got diagnosed and broke the news to me a little over a year ago, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I just reeled from the initial shock and then ran through a gamut of emotions. For a long time I teetered between denial and anger. Cancer doesn't always have to be a death sentence, and we didn't just throw our hands up and resign to the fact that that was it. We fought hard. But cancer is a formidable foe, and it's relentless. It eventually became apparent that she wasn't going to get better, and then she succumbed to the enemy.

I'm still working through each emotion. There's no right or wrong way to grieve, with a prescribed length of time to be in denial or overcome with sadness and so on. There's no textbook example. You come to grips with the reality in your own time and come to acceptance on your own terms. The defense mechanisms and the euphemisms, it's all about self-preservation. But I wish I could feel more because I'm second-guessing my make-up, steel, maybe? I know I'll crash soon enough. Yesterday I took it upon myself the most surreal task of calling the funeral home and was greeted by the receptionist who before getting to business and rerouting my call, expresed her sympathies - it was perfunctory, and it sounded that way, mechanical - it was almost amusing, I almost felt like laughing, like a madwoman at the irony of it all...

As for my mom: growing up and especially when I hit the so-called awkward teens, my Dad never had to give me lengthy sermons on how to be. They weren't necessary. When it came to fatherly advice, he had it all figured out and neatly summed up into a one-sentencer: "Just be like your mom." Full of admiration for her, he well knew that if I were to be like my mom, then I'd be set for life, if only I'd imitate her, then I'd be good, by following her sterling example, I could never go wrong. To emulate her was in my best interests. But unfortunately for me, my mom set the bar too high and had always been a hard act for me to follow, and now that's she's gone, there will be shoes too big to fill as I mother my own kids. She had the quietest and mildest spirit and she had this regal quality about her - of course, not that she was haughty or pompous, far from it, she was humble and meek. My mom was royalty in that she carried herself with grace and poise, she was a class
act and while she was this queen, I am just a commoner. Her virtues only magnified my faults but I never resented this. It had always been a privilege to trail behind in her shadow.

Yesterday, it was cold, grey & gloomy and then it finally poured. It might be presumptuous of me but I wanted to think above just purely the weather level and believe that for a moment, the actual heavens wept specifically and especially for my mom....

Sunday, September 12, 2010


I wanted to blog a bit on the madness that is Facebook. No, I didn't get on board from it's inception, in fact, I'm a newbie. I had jumped headlong into the bandwagon fairly recently but have been stuck eversince - I won't deny it, I can't, at one point I even publicly confessed that it was official, that I was a social networking junkie, teetering between highs and lows and withdrawal symptoms everytime I've tried to quit (I think cold turkey might be the only way to do it!) By now I have exactly 341 friends, my aim is to hit the nice round number of 350, not too quite a ways to go, and then I'll probably stop accepting and adding people. But that's nothing compared to the number of friends others I know have. It can hardly be an accurate gauge of one's popularity, can it? Well, if you think it is, you might be in trouble. That calls for a major major rethinking of your whole life's purpose if you feel that you need lame comments from high school girlfriends to tickle your ears & validate your self-worth. That's just sad :(

I read on an MSN article once, that the brain can only process and assimilate as much information of the equivalent of up to 250 FB amigos/as, that includes things like their overtly provocative TMI pics, the use of Facebook, particularly, the status update box, as their medium to whine, brag-plain (brag and/or complain), blast people to kingdom come (figuratively), wish people dead, buy and sell, get mushy and wax poetic, profess true and everlasting love, close business deals, review movies or restaurants, root for their hometown's hockey/basketball team, forecast today's weather in their respective parts (e.g. balmy weather in Florida, blizzards in Montreal, torrential downpours in Manila, tornadoes in the midwest, earthquakes in California, a gloomy and overcast afternoon in Manchester, and a sandstorm in Dubai!) to post and annouce just about anything under the sun from various classified ads, beloved family pet obituaries, actual engagements, divorces, weddings, births, adoptions, dating couple's monthsaries (eyeroll), Joey's first communion, baby's first, uh, gas-passing, David's Bar-Mitzvah, the conclusion of Ramadan, Keesha's cookout, Sarah's garden tea party replete with dainty cucumber sandwiches, excerpts of the lyrics of cheesy love-ballads, inspirational (?) quotes, latest acquisitions (new house, car, shoes, toothbrush) to the details and particulars of last night's shindig and midnight snack and today's brunch menu, etc., etc. and this list is not even remotely exhaustive! Of course, I am guilty of posting things of the exact same nature as some if not most of the above and I'm actually over MSN's prescribed limit by just shy of 100. No wonder I can't keep up. I don't even know why I even bother, at the end of the day does anyone really, truly give a rat's backside? (Rhetorical question)

Here's another thing on Facebook: you'll also find a chocful of viral video clips, again anywhere from funny spoofs (plural spooves? not sure!) spin-offs and parodies, music videos (like!), baton-twirlers, bollywood dance numbers, my fave and infamous(not mine personally!) clip of an actual C-section set to the relaxing strains of elevator music, elephant births, spoilers of the results/winners to many a reality competition/show, because people don't realize that there are what exists, different time zones, and just have to be the first to break the news to ruin the element of surprise for you after you had only religiously watched every single episode week after week for the entire season. (Gasp!) gory ones of mutilated people and even beheaded ones (which I've opened by error and in my horror!) I swear, I couldn't tell from the thumbnail-sized pic on my Ipod touch!) - images that have been indellibly seared onto the front lobe of my left-side brain (oops, song lyric! lol) and will haunt me forever. Disturbing, very disturbing.

And while Facebook provides gossip fodder in abundance (e.g. who got smashed drinking too much punch at the company's annual picnic, and who got canned for getting smashed drinking too much punch and tried to get their freak on with the CEO's son at the company's annual picnic!) and is supposed to be a fun and harmless way to re-connect and keep in touch with friends and family and perhaps rekindle old flames (not so harmless!) there are both potential & real dangers, besides the risk of developing physical conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, various RSI's, failing vision and a marked drop in one's Intelligence Quota, it serves as a lurking ground and bottomless resource for the unscrupulous and shady stock, out to get your personal information, assume your identity, defraud and empty your pocketbooks and sadly also for the absolute bottomfeeders/scum of the earth, namely, pedophiles (Please, can't emphasize it enough, please do not post pics of your painfully cute kids in their birthday suits even if you strategically pixelate some areas). I wanted to sound this warning especially since I have a couple of friends, who in their excitement, and a momentary lapse in better judgment, broadcasted their trip to Cancun this week over FB. Not a good idea, that's just asking for trouble, to let everyone know that your place will be empty for so long, unless of course, you also mention that your friendly wee little pet pitbull, Spot and massive Rottweiler, Chewy (short for Chewbacca and also known to chew on peoples' body parts) will be minding the house in your absence. Hopefully, that will serve as a deterrent, otherwise it's like an open invitation to clean out your place, drywall and all! Those people happen to be some out of my handful of real friends on Facebook, ones for whom I am, in all honestly, willing to die for. No, I don't mean to insult or embarass them in any way, this is just my way of looking out for them! (Although I might be a bit jealous for not being able to tag along to sunny Mexico!) Be safe my dear FB friends!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

On Whirlwind Shopping-Lunches

That's another thing we have down to a science: first we decide upon a retail establishment - either the neighborhood's upscale mall or sometimes the outlets a bit more further out - we plot the fastest route, synchronize watches immediately upon arrival thereat, agree on a meeting time and place and then without wasting another second, part ways as we make a beeline to our store of choice. Sometimes without even knowing it we'd have had the same idea and end up at the same boutique, (we kind of gravitate towards the sales section). We seem to have this mutual tacit understanding and not too many words are exchanged, maybe a simple nod to acknowledge the other's presence or to approve a piece of merchandise and then it's carrying on shopping because time is of the essence. Yes, while the directors have business lunches during which they sign contracts and close million dollar deals, we girls have "shopping lunches" where we scour through boutiques for rare finds and "steals" and empty our pocketbooks.

It was during one of these whirlwind noontime escapades that we found ourselves at an intersection with a semi-trailer truck charging right at us. We should've taken it as a sign that it wasn't meant to be, like some ominous writing on the wall, when en route to Marche Centrale, the highway exit turned out to be closed off due to construction & should have just turned around and headed back to the office, but you know, when there's a will, there's a way and no roadblock was so insurmountable as to keep us from making it to our destination. So as usual, when we got there, we parted at Old Navy, checked out Jacob, reconvened at Guess and finally assembled together in front of the car with our crinkly, rustling-tissue-lined paper bags and hopped in. And that's when we came face-to-face with the truck. My little compact sedan was actually encroaching on it's way. You know how some of those trucks have warnings on their rears that they make "wide right-turns" ? Well, we were in it's way as it was making one of those clumsy turns, and I didn't even hear the driver blasting his foghorn of a horn above my screaming so loudly like an idiot. All I could see was the word MACK set against the shiny radiator grill coming right at us. Sheryl just short of slapped me silly upside my head for me to get a grip of myself, and calmly verbally instructed me to just back up. So I did, and the truck, of course, neatly made it's way to it's side of the road. I later learned that for a fleeting milli-second Sema considered jumping car and ditching us, taking our purchases with her!

I'm not sure anymore whether we are the best threesome to be working together because instead of helping one another exercise self-restraint and will-power, we condone each other's actions and encourage, justify and egg on our compulsive shopping habit (same goes for the that-time-of-the-month chocolate, and McNuggets cravings!!!) Sometimes, we reason that in a way we are actually kissing the hand that feeds us, after all, we are in the retail construction business! That day we narrowly escaped certain death by human roadkill and indirectly, by shopping, well, maybe I'm exaggerating a bit, but really, it must've been some kind of divine retribution for too much self-indulgence....