Tuesday, December 29, 2009

adventures in e-books

I've had reader's-block for about a year, not to mention the writer's block. There is a growing pile of books on my nightstand that only the cleaning lady has ever touched. Recently when my ginger-haired shrink friend showed me how she reads books using her itouch, I was intrigued. I've wanted a kindle for a long time. It never occurred to me until the other day when I read an article in NOW magazine about how having a device created solely for reading e-books was redundant. Who needs to carry around more? I looked up the program my friend uses and found out it works on my blackberry.

I still wasn't convinced that (a) I could even still read books; and (b) that the interface would work for me.

I am partial to a physical book. I like the weight and the texture and bending the corners to mark my page. I like it when it is previously read and even better when it has underlines or notations in the margins.

But in the interest of embracing change or looking forward, I decided to give it a try. Thought I would let you know how it goes as it goes.

I looked up lists of books and prize winners and bestsellers. I chose Jonathan Tropper, This is where I leave you.

I left work an unheard of 15 minutes early because I was so excited to get on the subway and start reading. To use the words excited and subway in the same sentence is truly something since my hate for the process is almost out of control.

So far I can't put this damn bb down. People probably think I am one of those self-important business types who can't bare to miss an email, but I have happened upon a good book for where I am in life. I'm four chapters in and the only issue I've come across so far is the odd twinge of missing the actual book. The smell of the pages as you fan through looking for your dog-ear. That sort of thing.

Sunday, December 20, 2009


A lot has happened since I spoke to you last, dear blog.
Normally if I post anything at all, or even think about it, I just sift through old material and see if anything resonates.
But things have changed in many ways and so nothing feels quite right.

I was doing well for a while there.
Eating well, exercising, being social.
I met someone and went away on a trip.

But by the time I came home I had lost my momentum
And now I feel like I've gained some omentum (thank you Dr. Oz).

This guy I met made me feel small and pretty.
We talked about movies and books. We laughed at the same things.
There was this unseasonably hot November afternoon and we had lunch on a terrace. I remember he played me a voicemail he got from a client and I laughed until I cried.

There was a point in NYC where I got this feeling I had told too many people about how great it was going. It was like I couldn't help myself and I knew deep down it was doomed, and it was.

After that I was dying to tell him that my first impression was that he was gay, and that his brother was by far better looking than he was.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

high end irish

The debauchery continues. On the way home tonight I stopped and bought myself a Cinnibon. Seriously? What the fuck was I thinking?

I was doing so well. I went for dinner with some girlfriends to The Cottage on Queen East and had house smoked salmon and oysters with lemon. That's a great meal, and let me tell you, the selection was far from extensive-unless pork done 12 ways is your thing.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Saturday morning I woke up to a violent thunderstorm. I went out on my balcony and took a marble sized piece of hail that had pinged against my bike and put it in my freezer.

I went to the gym and ran for 45 minutes and then I met a guy I used to work with at Aroma later that day and because my plans for the night had fallen through and the last thing I wanted to do was laundry on a Saturday, I said yes to an invitation to dinner.

After dinner I invited him back to my place for more drinks but a little while later I wanted him to go. And I wanted more out of life.

Harry and his girlfriend had invited me to meet up with them later to go out dancing with their gay friends. I looked at the time and I knew they were already there. I wasn't convinced that in my condition I could make the transition or that I wanted to share my friend with his girlfriend.

Early the next morning I woke up thirsty, propped up in bed with my glasses and the bed side lamp on and I thought, fuck, I'm too much.

But this life is too much. Way too much to go about it completely unadulterated.

Monday, December 07, 2009

like it was ok

I came home from the restaurant and I felt good, so I poured another glass of wine.

"I don't care", I said aloud. "I deserve to feel good, and I'll take something to sleep too, even if I shouldn't." There are so many things I would like to be doing now that I can't, but this is something I can do and I never really did anything I wasn't supposed to, so I feel like I deserve this.

One more drink and then something to eat and then something to sleep. Yeah, that's right, all of those things. If I die in the process, oh well. I can't hold out forever.

Yesterday I told my shrink that my dream would be to come to see him with my baby. That would mean success. It was all for something.

He said it would be nice to have a baby in the office and I know he meant it and that's why I love him.

Funny, I miss the days when Alex talked about drinking wine all of the time, like it was ok.

Friday, October 16, 2009

xo bro

The 6 week garbage strike was over and for a while there I thought we had managed to escape unscathed. With the rental apartment and the garbage shute I was thrilled to say I had suffered no indignity.

The long weekend arrived and the strike had finally come to an end. To be honest I was sick of hearing about it. Who the hell needs to bank their sick days for retirement? They are SICK days, not vacation days for christ's sake.

And then just when I think we're in the clear, I embark on a bike ride and am engulfed with the stench that is beyond description. Troops of garbage trucks come at us from every direction across the field of the park near my house. I am choking back vomit.

"Breath throught your mouth" my friend screams at me as we peddle like mad to escape.

It turns our the place I was playing tennis for the first half of the summer was actually where the garbage was being stored. I don't think I will ever forget the site of those tennis courts and the smell.

And my brother called tonight to say that he called off the wedding. After the invitations and the flights booked home. They are done. Nine years later.

"She is dead to me", was all I could say. "dead".

Maybe the order of things is back. Maybe it was meant to be that my younger brother would not be married before me. Lucky for him he is a commodity in demand. A jewish doctor. Because he is also the sweetest man I know and his broken heart breaks mine.


Saturday, August 08, 2009

husbands of the suburbs

I'm a good girl.
I hold your babies.
I let your husband's inappropriate comments slide.
I'm attentive
And just interesting enough.
The wine helps.
Everything seems so much more interesting after a few glasses.
The suburban three bedroom houses.
The two car garages.
And nothing seems impossible to me.
Like how I know there is someone out there for me.

I can do all of the suburban things they do.
I think I could do it with a little extra something.
I've had more time than I wanted.
We'll call it time to come into my own.
In the end I think it will be time that I needed.

And while I can't compete with a 20 year old
There is a small chance that I am still the fish swimming
Parallel to you at the lakeshore.
We could show them all how provincially-minded they have become.
Or we could go numb together in the cold atlantic waters.
The kind of numb that refreshes us; wakes us up.
Not the kind I have grown into these past few years.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

half life

In the beginning, he said
It might make you worse than you already feel.
Crawling out of your skin
Unable to sit still.
There is always the risk.
But the chances are better with this one.
If I have to stop, I am assured, it is the easiest.
It takes weeks to leave your system.
A vulnerable feeling, but if it pays off
It would bring a kinder existence.
It's all in the half life, he tells me.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Are you there blog, it's me Rachel

Sill miss you dear blog
I think about you everyday.
I'm alright.
I've picked myself up,
But therein lies the problem.
I clean up well.

Monday, January 05, 2009

open to the world

Just think. Tonight could have been your lucky night. Got home from the gym at 8 PM only to find my quadruple deadbolts were wide the fuck open.

I remembered the notices around the building reminding us that a company was in today checking our smoke detectors. All I knew was that I was terrified to go inside. Also I was pissed at how half-hazard the process must be to forget to lock a door (which in my case screams to be locked with all of the deterrents I have). Being a complete pussy, I went down to the super and I made him come up and check out my apartment for intruders. I wouldn't let him leave until every closet, every large piece of furniture, behind the shower curtain and under the bed had been inspected. In all fairness he was apologetic.

Who knows how long this quaint little impromptu open house took place. Out of paranoia, I know where every thing should be. I make sure of it. At least it is safe to say no one was in there looking through my underwear drawer. Why that, you may ask? I don't know, because it happened the last time. And men..men are... why don't you ask one of them?

PS Also my stove stopped working the other day. The stove is older than I am! It will be missed.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

in and out

On Christmas day, Harry and I were buying movie tickets when we bumped into an old friend of his who used to work for the Huffington Post. He was telling us about his blog, when Harry said, "blogging is a NYC thing. No one in Toronto blogs".

"Sure they do", I said.

"Yeah, Toronto is actually a pretty blogger-rich city", Harry's friend added and then turned to me. "Do you blog?"

"No", I said. I could feel my cheeks burning. Later I thought about how I haven't blogged in so long I wasn't really lying. But it got me to thinking about how I missed it.

It's hard to come back. At first I stopped because I no longer had it in me. But then it's like I was waiting for something. Even when there was something to talk about, I wasn't sure I would know how to say it. I didn't want to come back with the obligatory, sorry I haven't been around lately-post, or the I promise I will post more frequently-post. I wanted to come back with something good, whether anybody would read it or not.

Tonight I felt like posting something. I don't feel like waiting and since it is my space to do just that, I'll start by telling you a few simple things. Maybe I will be back for more. Maybe not. But right now I miss this little narcissistic outlet.

First, I have to recommend that everyone see the movie Milk. Sean Penn did well as I am sure you have heard, although I must admit it took me about 10 minutes or so to believe him in this role. In a way I think that worked for the movie. Those that end up meaning the most to me in life are the ones who strike me in one way or another, whether it be I find them odd or abrasive or idiosyncratic. He grew on me exponentially.

What an incredible story. For a variety of reasons Human Rights have been on my mind, so this film was particularly timely for me. I have such respect for anyone who has the courage to live their lives authentically, especially in the face of oppositional expectations of their families, friends, and society. But to take that a step further and use yourself as an instrument of change is beyond my comprehension.

Yesterday I watched the movie In and Out. Since there are no new shows to PVR, I have turned to TV movies. I am surprised I didn't see this one when it was released several years ago, but it was a fun movie to watch. I bought the movie Capote at a used book store a while ago and I am about to watch it now. I've been saving it for just the right time. With only one episode of CSI:NY (I'm bored of CSI shows) and a couple of re-runs of The Office on my PVR, I'd say the time couldn't get much more right.

Lately, rather than listening to music when I run, I've become addicted to running to podcasts. Specifically I have been into (1) White Coat, Black Art, a CBC podcast by an ER doc in downtown Toronto who talks health care issues, and (2) the Dan Savage podcast. I am a huge Dan Savage fan. I have always read his column but I can't tell you how fast 45 minutes goes by when you are listening to him. Sadly, I am moving through them much too quickly, so I will soon be on the hunt for new podcasts. If anyone has any suggestions, please share.

It seems this post has a bit of a gay theme. While I'm not gay and therefore won't be coming out of that closet, I do one day hope to have the courage to come out in my own way. And so if I do come back to this blogging thing, maybe that would be a good direction to take my original theme, which was solely to 'capture'. Maybe the next phase of my blog (and maybe my life) could focus on taking it a step further: capturing and then living my life. Truly living.