Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Rainy View

Somethings not right lately. I've been overly tired and find myself struggling to stay awake at work which is not a good thing. The week end was very busy with a combination of a golf tournament, visiting friends and trying to stay dry. Everything appeared normal so I can't figure out what is going on. I don't have any visible bites that I can see so I don't thing that's it. The weather has been kind of miserable of late and I have been driving in the rain a lot. Then of course, I'm trying to cram 5 days of work into 3 1/2 to get to a long week end.

Gruesome Foursome!
(We did shoot a -3)

But the bottom line has been, that once I get home, all I want to do is sleep. However, no matter how long I sleep or nap or whatever, I wake up exhausted and just want to crawl back into bed. I'm not particularly hungry either. And this, I know, is not normal. Right now I just woke up after sleeping on and off for about 3 hours and I'm ready to go back to bed. Which I am going to do in a minute. Normally, I can function quite well on about 5-6 hours of sleep. Now more than 8 doesn't seem to cut it. It's probably nothing, but when things get out of sync, that's when it's good to be aware of what's normal and what isn't.

Little Miss Sunshine!

Friday, June 26, 2009


A couple of weeks ago, I read a blog posted by Cynthia, (Oasis Writing Link) in regards to Clint Eastwood's movie, Gran Torino. At the time I had not seen the movie, but from the short clip Cynthia had embedded and seeing ads on the movie, I decided to check it out. I watched it late Saturday night and let the imagery and story line sink in. On the rental version, the 'Bonus Features' focused on men and their relationship with vintage and muscle type cars such as the 1972 Gran Torino. One of my first cars was a 1973 Cutlass S 350 so I can kind of relate. I was actually a little disappointed, perhaps expecting a little more discussion on the theme of the movie and the behind the scenes concept. But there were none. When I first read Cynthia's piece, I did not want to read too many of the comments left there just in case more of the storyline was revealed. If you are planning on seeing the movie then you better stop here. Although I don't reveal too much here, I do reveal some scenes that had an impact on me. Anyways, the next morning, I watched the movie again and began taking the movie apart in layers. At least in layers the way I saw the movie. Tonight I reread the original post and every one of the comments that were left behind to see how many others saw what I saw. This in itself interested me.

I've always liked Clint Eastwood's movies, both as an actor and as a director. As an actor, his presence more than makes up for the minimal amount of dialogue that he generally has in his films. But as a director, and based partly on the comments I read, plus my own perception, he probably says more than even he realizes. There were so many subtle little stories and relationships within the film that seeing it just once would never do. But right from the get go, you can see that this was going to be something different and special. If you want to get a quick synopsis of the movie, you can go

Now, back to peeling away the layers. My first thought of Clint's character, Walt Kowalski was that of Archie Bunker to the nth Degree. His blatant bigotry and his acerbic tongue conflicted the fact that he was a Korean War Veteran whose duty it was to help the very kind of people he was now grumbling about. But to me, that was just a layer of the character that we were about to see so I quickly discarded it for what it was, a character. His disdain for his family, sons and grandchildren, was also very evident. And to some extremes, understandable, due to the total lack of respect shown at his wife's funeral. His disappointment in his kids appeared to have developed over a long period of time but that was just window dressing and was never developed in the film. It was the Ying to the impending cultural Yang that was about to develop.

The clash began, of course, over the attempted theft of his prized, cherry 1972 Gran Torino. The car became symbolic for various reasons. First, Walt himself worked at the assembly plant where the car was manufactured and installed the steering column. Combine this with the current trouble that the North American auto industry now finds itself in; plus the increasing numbers of import cars and one could easily see why Good ol' Walt's fuse is just a little short. Needless to say, when the battlefront moved to his front lawn, Walt resorted to a very fundamental need to protect what was his. In the ensuing confrontation however, he unknowingly opened the lid to something a little more violent and tragic.

Now here is where the movie started to get a little deeper. It took the focus off of the violence for a short time and showed us a glimpse of how other cultures dealt with family members who shamed them with their actions. It wasn't so much that Walt mentored his young neighbour Thao, in as much as the family gave Walt his services in order to make amends for his actions. The bonding came during this part of their relationship and perhaps Walt recognized something that he had missed in his relationship with his own sons when they were that age. I wonder what the reaction would be from some of today's youth if this was how they had to pay for some of their juvenile transgressions. Interesting thought anyways.
There is one scene where this makes a little more sense to me when you see Walt sitting on his porch, nursing a beer and reading his horoscope which says:

“This year you have to make a choice between two life paths. Second chances come
your way. Extraordinary events culminate in what might seem to be an anticlimax.”

Of course, at the time, Walt shrugs this off as utter nonsense. Just another layer really. However, throughout the movie, we capture glimpses of his health as it begins to deteriorate and wonder what is going through his mind. Again, this becomes more evident during a celebration at his neighbours house. When Sue, the neighbours daughter, tells Walt that the elderly Monk wants to "read" him. Sue translates the reading and you can tell the Monk starts hitting home with some of his observations. Especially when he says, “...you're worried about your life. You made a mistake in your past life; like a mistake that you did. That you're not satisfied with. He says you have no happiness in your life. It's like you're not at peace.”

The reality hits home to Walt when he rushes up to the bathroom to wash blood from his mouth. He looks at his image in the mirror and groans, “God, I've got more in common with these gooks than I do with my own spoiled rotten family.”

So, when I peeled away the layers of this movie, it had little to do with an angry, bitter Bigot. Or even about the gangs and the all too familiar violence of today's society. Too me, it was about a man, watching the last granules of sand, quickly tumble from his life's hourglass. Haunted by his own life, his failures, his misery's and his joys. Recognizing, just in time, that he too has to make amends for his past transgressions.

As the credits begin to roll at the end of this movie, you can hear Clint's hoarse voice warbling out some of the words from the movies them song:

So tenderly your story is
nothing more than what you see
or what you've done or will become
standing strong do you belong
in your skin; just wondering
Gentle now the tender breeze blows
whispers through my Gran Torino
whistling another tired song
Engine hums and bitter dreams grow
heart locked in a Gran Torino
it beats a lonely rhythm all night long
it beats a lonely rhythm all night long
it beats a lonely rhythm all night long...

Thanks to Cynthia for letting me know of this movie. It may well have been one I would have passed on.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Premio Meme Award

This little framed beauty, the Premio Meme Award was presented to me by none other than Audrey, from Stage3! Who, me? Merci bien, mon cher ami! This was unexpected to say the least. This is the second 'Award' that Audrey has graciously passed along to me in the last month. And in that month, I have witnessed an amazing transformation of sorts. In the past month, Audrey has become a public speaker, a very able participant in the Friday Shoot Out series and has shown a marvelous sense of humour. She has also expressed a true sense of humility and gratitude towards all of her blogging friends she has made over the past few months. I would be an idiot to not accept this from Audrey. Thank you so very much Audrey!

The rules for this one are to name 7 things about myself, and then to pass it on to 7 other people. Now what can I tell you that you don't already know?

  1. I was born with a broken nose. Seriously! They didn't want to operate on it when I was a kid and then when I started to play contact sports they told me to wait until I was finished playing sports. I'm not finished playing yet! 10 years ago I had a piece of one of my ribs inserted in my nose to help me breath better. Didn't work too well!

  2. Until this year, I have never looked at age as anything but a numbr. This year I'm looking at it as a milestone of sorts and have come to realize that I am on the other side of the hill. As you can see from the above, I am not done playing yet!

  3. I will probably not live long enough to read all of the books that I have collected. It doesn't mean I'm going to stop buying them or collecting them, I just may not get a chance to read all of them.

  4. The one person I regret not meeting in my life, was my Grandfather. My mother's father to be exact. He was killed in the Second World War. I have only 1 picture of him. In it he is wearing his uniform. It haunts me and for some reason, I believe that it is he who watches over me. Strange eh!

  5. I would love to see a collection of Blogger Poetry in a Coffee Table Book, published, with the proceeds going towards something that will do some good in this world. 2 of my poems were published about 12 years ago in a collection that was used to generate income for some local community groups. I think it would be nice to do something like that on a bigger scale.

  6. Life is a series of lessons. I am not always going to pass those lessons. I'm human and thus, prone to making mistakes. Mistakes are good; they give me something to work on....and I have a lot to work on.

  7. I love good food and so long as I can still see my feet when I look down....it's all good!

Now here is where I am going to change the rules a bit. My prerogative. I would like to make this a bit of an open Award. Anybody who sees this Award and wants it can take it. However, they do have to complete a list of at least seven things about themselves and share it with whomever crosses their blog. They should still acknowledge where the Award came from but the point is that they share a little of themselves with the rest of blog land. Take care everybody and thanks once again to Audrey.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Pleasant Clash of Cultures

I almost blew a great event on Sunday because I was puttering around the house. Or maybe I should say, that I should stay a little more in tune with what is going on in the community where I live! Apparently our community was celebrating it's annual Multi-Cultural Event. Something I haven't seen since I moved to this fair city some years ago. It was a gorgeous day so I went for a walk. Not really sure if I had a definite destination in mind. My walk took me to the front of City Hall where there was some kind of a remote controlled Boat/Ship competition going on. I guess I missed that too but I did catch a glimpse of some of the entrants. Rather impressive.

Anyways, just down the street from there, in the hub of our fair city, lies Victoria Park. So named, in honour of Queen Victoria who ruled Britannia from 1837 until her death in 1901. Hence, the park and the huge statue of the Queen's likeness. Well, I heard music and saw throngs of people heading in that direction so, being a bit curious, I decided to check things out for myself. At the entrance to the park, people were crowded around a couple of new fountains cooling themselves down from the scorching heat. I will tell you how scorching later. Meanwhile, I continued strolling towards the sound stage where I began to see people all dressed up in costumes from their cultural homeland.

Along the perimeter of the grounds were tents set up of Cultural Groups selling some of their homeland product. The ladies would have had a field day with the variety of Jewelry and very colorful summer wraps. While at other tents and kiosks there was a smörgåsbord of tempting delicacy's from literally, all over the world. No need to worry about dinner tonight, I thought. I mosied around catching as many of the sites and sounds as possible. I even took a ton of pictures. Only to realize later when I got home that my shutter wasn't opening all the way on quite a few of the good shots, ruining them. However, I did manage to snap a few that I could share with you here.

There was one scene which epitomized this whole cultural event for me as clear as day. There in the grass, running back and forth, were two little boys, running carefree and happily playing with each other. Oblivious to the colour of each others skins, origin or background. Just being children. I think more adults should have been paying better attention to that little scene. All in all, it was a successful week end. Yup! It started on Saturday so I missed the first day. Oh well....I will remember for next year. As for the food, there was enough to feed a small country. There was Indian, Greek, Italian and Chinese as well as a wide variety from the Middle East, the Filipino's and the Caribbean. Actually it was endless. I settled for one plate from the Filipino's and brought home a combination of Indian and Greece. Believe me, I was well fed. There were a lot of pics so I will try to show you a little of everything.

Oh......almost forgot! About the scorching sun part. As you may have guessed, being a red head, I don't do sun very well. I like being in it but it definitely doesn't like me. I lost a little chunk of ear a few years back from skin cancer so I generally lather on the sun screen. I could feel the heat of the day and figured I would pay for this later. After resting a bit when I got home, I went to take a shower and all I could see in the mirror was some dude that looked like the colour of a lobster. Sorry.....no pic. I kind of draw the line in the sand on some things. You will have to use your imaginations for that one. Needless to say, I had a very enjoyable time and was more than satisfied.

Clock Tower in Victoria Park

Roast Piggy!

Shelter from the sun!

Goods for Sale!
A sign of the times!
Cooling Off!

Treasure Chest Fountain

Folk Dancers

More Folk Dancers!
(There were dancers from Romania, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Turkey. I can't remember the order they came out and don't want to chance a mistake.)

Literally a Multi-Cultural Group

African Artwork

A variety of Tea Pots

Little Darlings from China

Future Generations

Fun times!

Another shot of the Clock Tower

More African Art!

Don't these hats remind you of anything?

First Peoples

Chinese Dancer

The Parks namesake
Queen Victoria herself

One of my purchases

Monday, June 22, 2009

Tomorrow's Sunrise

Tomorrow's Sunrise

Walking lazily


towards the days

setting sun

Discreetly following

cottony white clouds


Against the crimson backdrop

of an early

Summer Sky

Watching dreamily

as it dances


the distant horizon

Towards the sunrise


somebody else's

by G. De Rouin
(aka: Bogey)
June 21, 2009 ©

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Rainy, Random and Romantic

It was bit of weird weather day today somewhat matching the quiet, melancholy mood that I woke up in. When I did crawl out of bed, it was to a steady stream of rain complete with dark, grey skies. My brain felt really tired this week for some reason, so it was a welcome relief not to have to run off this morning. It was busy that's for sure and there were a few extra long days in the office followed by some nights where sleep eluded me. It's funny how that happens sometimes. You go to bed exhausted, thinking sleep will quickly embrace you. But then, you find yourself watching the numbers tumble on the bedside clock. You do that a couple or three nights in a row and your brain gets tired, sensitive and mushy. I don't like a mushy brain because then I'm not sharp and prone to being on edge, snappy and sarcastic.

Needless to say, I started the day off at a slower, more deliberate and relaxing pace. Which conflicted, of course, with the plans I laid out for myself last night. There is a ton of work for me to do around here but I figure, 1) that it will still be there tomorrow. And 2) if I die before I wake, then I didn't waste today on it. So this morning, I did a little unhurried Blog reading while enjoying a couple of hot mugs of coffee and listening to Mr. Beaks perform his Morning Glory routine with his neighbourhood Birdie Buddies. Then I was blessed with a bit of a surprise that started to help me re-centre myself. I went to Rosaria's, sixtyfivewhatnow blog and read up on her family visit earlier this week. This was nice and pleasant in itself but then Rosaria introduced us to, “The Comforter's”, featuring her daughter Pia and son-in-law, Jason.

What a marvelous and enjoyable treat that was. I paid their website a visit, listened to the soundtracks from their CD and fell in love with “Lazy Sunday's”. The relaxing tunes prompted me to put in my order for a copy of my own which, I'm sure, I will enjoy immensely. Needless to say, I was enjoying my slow, lazy morning. The rain was still teeming outside as I watched it from my window. Then another nice surprise landed in a nearby Cedar Tree. A brilliant red Cardinal decided to drop by for a visit. He was stunning against the green leafy backdrop. I grabbed my camera and was lucky enough to get a couple of shots. He was being cooperative and didn't seem to be in too much of a hurry. I figured if he could tolerate the rain, with no side effects, then I doubted I was going to melt in it either! But just as I said that, the rain began to let up a little and the skies became a little brighter.

In the mood to for a bike ride, I figured I could tackle a couple of errands while I was out. The sun surprisingly poked it's head out for a few hours allowing me to get out for a few hours. I put about 20 kilometers under me and enjoyed the fresh air and music. On the way back, I heard a commotion coming from the Town Square and remembered that this was the day of our Country Music Fest. Thought about going for a look see, but it would have just dug up old bones I wasn't in the mood to visit again. My body was encouraging me to take a nap and so I allowed myself to succumb to the idea. Not sure exactly how long I was out but I did feel like sleeping longer than I did. But I'm glad I didn't.

When I cleared the sleep from my eyes, an old favourite movie was about to start. Random Harvest, a 1942 Classic starring Greer Garson and Ronald Colman. If you are a sucker for an old fashioned romantic movie, then I recommend this one very highly. You can go here to the Turner Classic Movie Database to get a complete overview of the movie. Well, those were the highlights of my lazy Saturday. I hope you all had an enjoyable one as well or maybe you will settle for a Lazy Sunday.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Loud Triggers

Ever since I was a kid, listening to people yelling, either at me or around me, kind of became the norm. Add that to the fact that I grew up in a foster home and to be sure , you know that some sort of complication would arise somewhere down the line. Being treated less than, kind of grew weary, even for me. And to make matters worse being called a, “Son of a Whore” or, “you little Bastard” became all too familiar. Just for the record, my mother was married when I was born, so that doesn't make me a “Bastard”. But in the eyes of the “Caregivers” this was what I was, and I wore that cloak of shame silently. Somewhere deep inside of me, a dark, silent rage was growing but I carefully kept it bundled tight. Years passed. I spent a very short period of my life (8 months to be exact) living with my father, his then girlfriend and her two daughters. Needless to say, things were no better there. As a matter of fact, they were a little worse. One of my father's most famous lines was, “I brought you into this world...and I can take you right back out”. Couple that with the fact that he had loaded weapons in the house, and you tend to take that a little more seriously. There were a few times I wanted to intentionally provoke him just to see if he would do it. Maybe a little irrational, but my only thought was finding a permanent escape from the only kind of life I knew. And to me, that would have been welcome at the time.

I think this was around the time I started to develop what a friend would describe as , “The Death Look”. It's kind of like a hard, icy, venomous glare. It's like all those feelings that I consumed as a child and had kept tightly wrapped would emit some kind of a dark ray from my soul and through my eyes. This was my way of letting somebody know, very quietly, that they just crossed my boundaries and it's not acceptable. This was what I resorted to instead of yelling. First off, I don't do confrontations very well. If I speak up verbally, it's probably a good thing and I only do it if I feel like my inner child is being attacked. Certain people have had an unbelievable knack of knowing just exactly what buttons to push to send me off the deep end. Then, I absolutely lose it on them. My old boss was like that. He had a way of abusing his power and constantly making people feel like dirt beneath his feet. Whenever he would attack one of the people I was responsible for, I would confront him and lash out at him with a fury. Believe me, it's not something I'm proud of but I just couldn't stand watching his behavior go unchallenged. I paid for it with my job, but to me, it was worth it.

Whenever I hear yelling or even when I feel a confrontation coming on, I tend to get really, really quiet. It's like something inside of me is preparing for a storm and barricading the windows and doors. I felt like that for most of today because of an early morning incident at work. It had nothing to do with me personally, but just because I heard them yelling on the phone in such an abusive way, it kind of shut me down. At lunch, I brought it up with the person I overheard (I'm trying to be very discreet here) and asked them whether they thought that was appropriate behaviour. Their response was, “in this business it is”. They feel that some people deserve to be yelled at like that. That they are used to doing the yelling so he feels that it is necessary for him to balance it out. Well, I can honestly say that this particular person is not used to being yelled at either and somehow, I don't think he would accept that from anybody. It amazes me what some people find as accept in today's society. You would think by now we would have tried on the other persons shoes from time to time just to feel what it is like to suffer that kind of abuse.

There are other kinds of abuse that I find equally disturbing. One of them is the fine art of the mind game. There are so many formats for this particular game it is hard to keep track of them. Suffice it to say, some of the people who play this game, know exactly what the rules are and they generally play it with a win at all cost attitude. I've had this game played on me more than I care to discuss and needless to say there have been many severed friendships and relationships because of it. It's not always out in the open so at first you don't notice the subtleties but eventually there is a slip and whammo....nailed again. Of course there are innocent formats of the mind game and people tend to play that like a game of chess. But then there are the malicious versions whereby somebody is trying to gain the upper hand on an emotional level, playing a card that is downright mean. These are definitely people I could do very well to stay away from. I've done my damnedest to treat people the best way I know how . And that is how I too would like to be treated.

Personally, I don't think it is asking for too much, but in a society bent on preying on those who's defenses have been weakened by life, where do we draw the line in the sand? I can't understand why the fine art of honest, respectable communication has become a thing of the past. Why can't people just tell it like it is and be done with it? What has happened to the respect we should be showing each other whether in business or otherwise. Why must communication be performed at the decibel level of a Rock Concert? I know one thing, there are games that I have outgrown as a child and there are games I can do without as an adult.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Uber Amazing Blog! (?)

The other night while doing my routine rounds, I discovered that James, from Newtown Daily Photo, had bestowed upon me this Uber Amazing Blog Award. This is James’ second blog site since he has moved from his original Texas blog, Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. What I like about James’ Blog are the great photos he takes of the new community and the historical surroundings that he and his family now find themselves living in. This was typical of his other Blog, which he still manages to post plenty of historical photos of his old hometown surroundings. I encourage you to visit his sites and see for yourselves. I am grateful and appreciative to James for bestowing this Award on me and for continuing to follow along with me. James claims to be a man of few words but his photos speak volumes. Thanks James!

Uber (synonym to Super) Amazing Blog Award is a blog award given to sites who:

  1. Inspire you

  2. Make you smile and laugh, or maybe give amazing information

  3. A great read

  4. Has an amazing design

  5. Any other reasons you can think of that make them Uber amazing!

The rules of this award are:

  • Put the logo on your blog or post.

  • Nominate at least 6 blogs

  • Let them know that they have received this Uber Amazing award by commenting on their blog.

  • Share the love and link to this post and to the person you received your award from.

  • I am passing this award to the following 6 bloggers for their amazing blogs!

Audrey from: Stage 3! Who, me?

Cynthia from: Oasis Writing Link (OWL)

Lori from: Lori Times Five

Lori from: My Life Interupted

Michelle from: The Truth as I Know It

Natalie from: Musings From the Deep

Congrats Ladies! As you are aware, and considering you are all well versed in this Award stuff, you only have to participate if you so choose!

Monday, June 15, 2009


Words; even the word, words, is a word. Words are fascinatingly brilliant. They have meaning, truth, power and strength. Words can be descriptive, captivating, alarming, funny and sad. Words can be loving, cheerful and kind. But words can also be harmful, rude and destructive. We have our first words and our last words. Words can be written and words can be spoken, but once spoken, words can never be taken back. You can use words to make people smile or you can use words to make people cry. Words can be comforting and soothing. Or they can be heated and used in anger. Words can be icy, cold and distant. And words can be deceptive and manipulative. Words can be shared, traded and thoughtful. And words can be provocative, transformed and multiplied.

Words can be strung together or taken apart. Words can be poetic and lyrical. You can add music to the words and sing them. You can find words within words and create new words. There are Spiritual words, Religious words and healing words. There are words of forgiveness and even of hatred. Words can be whispered and secretive. There are even words to tell you what other words mean. Some words have more than one meaning, while other words sound the same but are spelled differently and are nothing alike. Words can be puzzling or misunderstood. Words can be used to sell things and they can be used to make you buy things. Words can be coded, transmitted or even televised. They can even be sent out into space.

Words can be written in dots and dashes, beeps and pulses. You can even use flags or smoke and even lights. They can be scrambled and scrabbled, boggled and criss-crossed. Even pictures represent a thousand words! Words can be spoken in hundreds of languages and dialects. Some words can even be understood by pets and animals. Other words can be inscribed, transcribed and even prescribed. Words can be haunting and frightening, even daunting and bold. Words can be used for you or against you. They can describe you and flatter you or mock you and laugh at you. Words can be enchanting, charming or devilish and devious. They can be cunning and baffling! Words can be sly and wry, witty and humbling.

There are people who have a way with words. Some people can say a lot with just a few words while others can waste words and say nothing at all. Words come easy to some people while others struggle to find words. Bloggers love words. They read them and write them and then they write more words if they like the words they read. They are sharing and caring and transported across this planet we call home. Words. The words come from our hearts, our souls and our funny bones, entangled with a myriad of emotions. Some of the words we read and write squeeze our heart so hard that our words are caught in our throats. We use these words to express how and what we are feeling. We don't always have the words to express why. Sometimes those words are just to difficult to get to. There are so many more things that I could express here but well, I have just run out of words!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Dinner Out

Had a nice and pleasant evening tonight as I took a friend out to dinner to celebrate their birthday. We went to a local upscale restaurant called Solé. Solé's is situated in a 150 year old Seagram's Distilling building, minutes from our Uptown Core . Very close to the pictures I showed on our walk a few weeks back. The interior soars two stories high to a timber frame ceiling, exposed brick and generous wood finishes, setting the tone for an elegant yet casual experience. The walls of the restaurant were adorned with the art of Bianca D'Angelo who is a young aspiring local artist ready to confront the world with her art. Although this was somewhat planned, I didn't make reservations yet we were accommodated within minutes. And the food was fantastic.

Art of Bianca D'Angelo

I started off with pan seared sea scallops in a double smoked bacon and wild mushroom cream, garnished with shards of Parmesan cheese. The scallops were a little small but the sauce was unbelievably filled with flavour. Then I followed this up with a plate of Mixed Baby Greens... balsamic and olive oil, sun dried tomatoes, charred corn and toasted pine nuts. Then, for my main course I selected Medallions Of Pork Tenderloin... vanilla and saffron poached pear, port plum reduction and mashed sweet potato. The pear was centered in the middle of the plate making it quite the showy presentation. And, although I was pretty stuffed, we couldn't have a birthday celebration without a little cake. So we both indulged ourselves with a huge wedge of Carrot Cake coated in a creamy icing. Of course, I could barely move after that and was just looking forward to getting into some comfy clothing.

We ate in this room!

Interesting Pizza Oven

Well, tomorrow I get to work it all off! We have a planned recreational day tomorrow afternoon at work where we combine a bike ride with a canoe trip down one of our local rivers. Hopefully the weather cooperates. I hope you all have a wonderful Friday....and don't sweat the small stuff, 'cause it's all small stuff. Sometimes ;-)

Nice Copper Touches

High Vaulted Ceilings

Thursday, June 11, 2009

For My Sake

At some point in my life, I'm not exactly sure when, I stopped living for me. Not completely but a good portion of me surely did. Without knowing it, I became a people pleaser. A kind of 'Yes' man to anybody looking for something, whether it was money they wanted, a job done or a ride somewhere. Whatever, I just became an old reliable and that, was where the separation of me began. Something inside of me was looking for acceptance and wanting people to like me and it appeared that they liked me if I gave them what they were looking for. Regardless of how trivial. The same went with relationships. To me, happiness appeared when I was making the other person happy, or so it seemed. If I felt disappointed for some reason or another, I just pushed those feelings inside. I was going to say aside, but that wouldn't have been right. Inside, was indeed, more appropriate.

In some instances, such as birthdays, Christmas, Valentines or anniversary's, I went a tad overboard in trying to be a pleaser. Because I thought that if I gave more, I would be loved or liked more. For me, it was all about the reaction I would get. The instantaneous moment of joy upon the reveal. And of course, always trying to outdo myself the next time around. But I guess I was missing the point of what was happening and couldn't see the forest for the trees. It's just that now, I look back on certain events of my life and I see a lot of emptiness. Memories yes, for sure. But a lot more emptiness. Sometimes I punish myself with these memories and other times I am grateful for them. For in each remembrance, I am reminded that at least, I had those moments.

As the days peel away from the calendar and I approach that next milestone birthday, I sit back and take stock of the past almost 50 years. Like everybody, I have had my trials and tribulations and I have survived. But now, I no longer want to just survive. I want to be able to enjoy what the future has to offer me. But I want to be prepared for it. In the past 4 months I have become fully conscious of a lot of my own character defects and want to deal with them in an appropriate fashion. But, I also want to work on those things that have caused me to put myself second or third or last. I'm trying to be careful in a lot of ways. Being slow and deliberate. A lot of this writing has benefited me greater than I could have imagined. It forces me to confront things that I took as ordinary and normal. I have realized that there was nothing normal about it.

And finally, I have done a lot of reading. And I don,t just read for the sake of reading. Maybe I over think what it is I am reading sometimes but only because I want to give the author the respect deserved for the courage it took to share some of their journey with us. I have seen people become fearless in dealing with things that have scarred their hearts. When you see their words in print, that is all we see. The words. We can only imagine the journey they went on to get through to the essence of their pain. And yes, some of us can identify with those journeys but we each have that little bit of uniqueness that makes our stories exactly that, our stories. And their courage gave me the courage to reach within and deal honestly with the excess baggage I have carried. You see, I am doing this for me. So that I can continue to have days that I can laugh at myself and take care of me.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Silly, silly Me!

I'm sitting here looking at the clock at the bottom of my screen and the numbers are telling me that it is almost 11 p.m. Actually, I'm kind of stunned at the quickness of the past two days, which is why I am trying to catch my breath here a little. Last night I did not get home until after 10 p.m. And today, I was in the office at 6:45 a.m. and got home at just after 7 p.m. Yesterday, my day had a rather inauspicious start which kind of left me with an uneasy feeling of dread. I woke up early and went into the kitchen feeling refreshed from the weekend and began to put a pot of coffee on as is my customary morning ritual. Filling the pot with fresh cold water, carefully counting the scoops of coffee, then pouring the water into the reservoir, I hit the on button then proceeded to the shower. From the kitchen, I could hear the steamy, gurgling sounds emanating from the coffee maker as the aroma penetrated my olfactory senses.

The cleansing process complete, I head back into the kitchen to pour a fresh cup of morning glory. I stop dead in my tracks as I stare in stunned silence at what I see. There in front of me is a puddle of coffee, sizzling on the burner where the pot should be! Coffee still dribbling out from the now overflowing basket. I scratch my head in wonder and mutter to myself, "Where......the......hell........ is the %&#@*+? coffee pot?" Okay, so maybe I screamed a little. I quickly yank out the plug and proceed to clean up the mess before it gets any worse. Meanwhile, I'm thinking to myself, only half out loud, " Okay dumb ass, what did you do with the coffee pot?"

So, I proceed to replay my early morning steps in my mind, the feeling of restfulness now totally annihilated. And the freshness of the hot, steamy shower nothing more than a distant memory. I put another coffee filter in the basket, count out more scoops of coffee and then stand there racking my brain. Where? I open the fridge door and take a peak inside. Nope, not there. Believe me, I've done crazier things! Then I proceed through the living room glancing around. Nothing. Into the bedroom, then the bathroom and still nothing!

I go back into the kitchen and lean against the counter and begin muttering. Okay, you filled the pot with water. No, no, no, that's not right. You filled the basket with coffee, then filled the pot with water. Poured it into the reservoir and flipped the switch. I start going through the motions just to satisfy my brain. Then you proceeded to the shower stopping by the linen closet to grab some fresh towels. My hand now rests on the door pull of the closet and I slowly pull it open. And there, sitting atop a pile of towels is the empty runaway coffee pot! All I can do is laugh at myself and wonder, "What's next"?

Now that I am running behind schedule, I dress quickly. Grabbing a T-Shirt that a friend picked up for me last week while they were in Atlanta, then booked it to the office. The day was moving quickly and I had some drawings ready for a clients review. A meeting was arranged for later that morning. I plotted off the drawings grabbed the file and had everything in the little boardroom. At around 11 a.m. the client comes in and the boss and myself present the drawings to the customer for review and discussion. With the business portion of the discussion out of the way I leaned back in my chair. The client did likewise then looked across the table at me and said, "I see you like to wear X-Large T-Shirts". I look back at him, puzzled by the comment, but nod politely. He then points to my chest where I look down to see the plastic strip indicating the size still neatly tattooed to the T-Shirt! Brilliant! Again, all I can do is laugh at myself and of course the client and my boss joined in. What else are you going to do?

Inviting people to laugh with you while you are laughing at yourself is a good thing to do. You
may be the fool, but you're the
fool in charge.

~ Carl Reiner

Sunday, June 7, 2009


I dance


a warm blanket of stars

side stepping shadows


from the beams

of a full

Spring Moon

I sing

meaningless songs

with no lyrical


to unrehearsed tunes

played by

bouquets of

Golden Winged Warblers

I dream

of places unseen


by life's cruel carnage


and bountiful

but only

seen in a dream

I weep

for tormented Angels


alone in despair


reaching out

to those with

lost souls

I sleep


without shame

in my Spirits embrace


and humbled

in all that

I am
by G. De Rouin
(aka: Bogey)
June 07, 2009 ©