Thursday, August 30, 2018

Domestic Chaos

Given the absence of guests or cleaning woman, I can descend rapidly into my own kind of chaos. My housekeeping is reactive rather than proactive. For instance, I always figure a geographical cure will fix me for once and for all. Downsizing so extremely into a one-bedroom apartment as I have done would be a superb motivator, I thought. A brand new me, organized and ready for anything.

Well, no. In analyzing my behaviour I come to the conclusion that it is a case of not putting stuff back where it belongs when finished with it. I never seem to be "finished" with anything and am highly visual. I like to "see" items - my knitting, my wools, my books on the unread shelf, my clothes, my shoes, my food.

Now to the clothes. A purge is desperately needed. I made a "rule" for myself many years ago that if not worn in a year it gets donated. Also one item comes in and another gets donated. The latter formula has been neglected so my closet needs to be investigated thoroughly and dealt with. I have (unfortunately) a rather large bathroom and I use a clothes rack there to dry some of my more vulnerable items rather than throwing them in one of the communal dryers. I deal with those only when under threat of a visitor, it is far to easy to walk around them and think, oh yeah, well tonight. Tonight never comes. I have a toolkit in my hall that I can't seem to find a home for. Drives me a little batty as I step around it and shake my head. And unhung pictures are still an issue though shrinking a little in quantity.
I do keep the kitchen relatively tidy as it is small and awkwardly designed. For instance there is an enormous built in pantry which in concept you'd think would be just great for everything foody. But in practice it's another story entirely. Note the sets of shelves on the left (I brought these from the utility room in my house) as is was just a wide open space for what gawd knows. I have taken it apart several times and bought step-shelves to go on the right-side shelves but I've never seen such a poorly designed space. I may have to break down and get someone to install pull out wire drawers so it could hold everything in an organized but visual way. There is a serious lack of counter-space and only one sink. We take our double sinks for granted don't we? I did. So dirty dishes left lying around can impact the tiny space in the kitchen making of me an (almost) instant washer-upper.

Joanna, my cleaning woman, my saviour, was here yesterday and did the needful: dusting, vacuuming, sweeping, mopping and counter-shines.

Into every life should fall a reassuring Joanna, garrulous but now under control somewhat, a woman who takes pride in bringing order to domestic upheaval.

Monday, August 27, 2018


Credit Card Fraud

My visa card is mine alone. Safe in my wallet. I am cautious with on-line shopping. I check vendors carefully. I've only ever had it abused once and that was a clerk at a Self-Storage unit in Toronto who ran up a few thousand dollars on it five minutes after I left her office but the good news was that she was arrested and charged.

Imagine my shock today when my comfort zone was rudely interrupted when all these euro charges from Brussels, Belgium showed up on my statement. How on earth can this happen? Individually the amounts are not enough to be suspicious but overall they add up to a significant number. I imagine a large cartel of unscrupulous wankers selling off hoards of such numbers grabbed from goddess knows where. Abe books? Walmart on line? Itunes?

Credit card fraud cost the US 16 billion dollar in 2016. No numbers exist for Canada though at one point I believe it was nudging close to 2 billion dollars.

Meanwhile all my fraudulent charges are suspended, the Visa fraud unit is on top of it all and I'll be getting a new card in 10-15 days.

A time consuming business for me today, I logged a couple of hours between the bank, being put on hold for multiple personnel at visa, and taking a verbal oath that all I said was true, etc. I spent a fair whack of that time wondering when, where and how the breach occurred.

Anyone else out there with a fraud story?

Friday, August 24, 2018

Ruminations 2

See Ruminations 1

But also see this previous post

What kind of world is it when yesterday someone I love was threatened with rape and death countless times (she stopped counting at 500) for posting the simple, scientific and biological fact of "Women don't have penises."

I had written a very long follow-up post to my previous one. But I'm not going to bother posting it.

Suffice to say is I only have one question for those who believe that being a woman is just a feeling:

Can you describe what that feeling is without resorting to stereotypes?

Please. I am serious.

The women with penises brigade and their supporters don't want to engage in any serious and respectful debate. Instead they spew hateful and murderous threats. It is absolutely frightening.

And yes, I know, just like #notallmen #notalltrans. But only 10% of trans have SRS. And are raised with all that masculine privilege affords them. And FYI: there were trans in my inner circle in Toronto.

I offer you this one insanity without comment, there are hundreds of others: an abused woman in a Toronto Women's Shelter.

Women have been colonized and oppressed for far too long. We need our safe spaces. Desperately. Including our girls. In a restaurant recently I was asked by a dad holding his little daughter's hand outside the washroom was it safe for her. Dear Goddess. We have come to this.

As to my beloved, the matter was reported to the police who announced they could do nothing in a world of free speech. Death threats are free speech. This is how women get murdered in Canada when they complain about restraining orders being ignored.

I'm too old for this shyte.

Loud and proud: The emperor wears no clothes.


Tuesday, August 21, 2018

The Fine Art of Dying

I will come back and write a followup on my post "Ruminations" shortly. And please, can we all be civil? If you knew me you'd know how tolerant and loving I am and I know that my readers are the same. I like to believe that no one is hating on anyone, particularly on the marginalized in our society of which there are far too many.

Meanwhile one of my stories is up at As Time Goes By and for those long term readers: you will recognize the protagonist from previous posts (2014). She is still beloved. And she still makes me smile when I think of her, especially when I walk by a framed needlepoint she gave me many years ago which hangs in my kitchen but it breeches my anonymity so I can't post a pic.

Those are some of my birthday flowers above. My friends and wee family are treasures. Treasures I tell ya! More on that fabulous surprise party later.

Sunday, August 19, 2018


“Men are afraid that women will laugh at them. Women are afraid that men will kill them.”

― Margaret Atwood

On the love between women: "A certain tenderness, a certain reciprocity, not having to make allowances for the male compulsion and fundamental sense of superiority. What man doesn't have it? Gay men included."

- May Sarton

“Many women, I think, resist feminism because it is an agony to be fully conscious of the brutal misogyny which permeates culture, society, and all personal relationships.”

- Andrea Dworkin

For a couple of years Daughter tracked the number of women killed by their partners in Canada. It was difficult, traumatizing work but no one else was doing it. Police records are not helpful. Most of it is classified under "domestic incident", with the victims' names erased. She had to give it up as it was too painful and heartbreaking. Every 6 days in Canada a woman or girl is murdered by those who purportedly love them. These victims are not commemorated in any way. She wanted to start a wall of remembrance in her town rather than the planned wall/monument/hallelujah gizmo honouring another dead male soldier. The soldier won. They always do.

This inherent male violence still has the power to startle me. A male blogger, who projects an image of gentleness and compassion, was accosted recently by a female neighbour, one he dislikes, and his immediate reactive desire (not acted upon, thank heaven) was to punch her in the head "until her eyes popped out."

And yes, I know #notallmen - but that is not the point. Where are the #notallmen condemning their violent misogynistic brothers? ( PS they don't, reference an intense conversation I had on weekend with two good male friends).

Furthermore, I am getting so sick and tired of female statistics now being skewed by "transwomen" who are invading female bathrooms, jails, police cells, locker rooms and women's shelters and along with raping their victims and intimidating little girls insist on being called "women" while us born women are labelled "cis". Not to mention competing in women's athletics and winning trophies. And seriously, if you're trans, live long and prosper, but please keep your penised presence away from our most vulnerable spaces. And realize, please, you have absolutely no idea of what it is to have lived a woman's experience in this world. None. Stilettos and makeup and push up bras and the lipper and slap is all we are? Stereotype much? Seriously?

All I've ever wanted for myself and other women is liberation, to be who we want to be without the inherent underlying threat of male violence and control and now, goddess help us, we've admitted it to our most personal and private spaces.

And don't get me started on how most seem to conflate gender and sex.

That's another post entirely.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018


The smoke from the wildfires in BC and California (the Pacific ocean) has spread across Canada to our island of Newfoundland (the Atlantic ocean), affecting our weather.

Here's a map of the BC fires.

Here's a map of Canada

We are over 7,000 km away from these fires (see distance from Vancouver on our west coast to St. John's on the east coast).

That's over 4,350 miles.

We have entered the zone of the 4 Cs = Constant Chaos of Climate Change.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

A Jewel of a Day

Yesterday, Daughter and I and an Ontario friend who spends the summers here hung out for the day.

First of all, we went to the Mad Rock Cafe, a treasure of a place well off the beaten path. They serve the best toutons in Newfoundland. And also the best fishcakes. Believe me you haven't lived until you have eaten these fresh made treasures with lashings of molasses.

The day was glorious and the chat was mighty. We then headed to Cupids where the summer Perchance Theatre was in session. We saw "Our Eliza". And were blown away by both the script and the cast. Daughter and I were sobbing at the end, a truly powerful play about the dynamics between a demanding father, played by Greg Malone and his caretaking daughter, played by Allison Moira Kelly.

In that way of Newfoundland and as I know Greg slightly, I met up with him afterwards to chat. He told me he drew his devastating "father" from his own father. We also chatted about his last book, "Don't Tell the Newfoundlanders" a remarkable recounting of the story of Newfoundland, which I read from cover to cover as it reads like a novel.

And lastly - a picture of the town of Cupids I took a few years back, pre theatre and heritage centre days.

All in all a truly splendid day.

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Today's Photos

I love the security of books on my headboard. Some are library, some are from Grandgirl and some from Daughter. All unread. Luxury.

Looking out my window right now I see this faithful son bringing goodies to his mama. I love the contrast of tough biker vs the pastries in the bag.

A very dear friend, now since passed at well over 90, painted me this when I was very ill one time. It goes everywhere with me and is right beside my computer corner.

And in today's mail - my new swimsuit. There are many pools around me now and aquafitness sessions so I'm going to give it a bash. Mail ordering is the bomb.

Monday, August 06, 2018

The Factory

I joke that when I am knitting small items on consignment for some tourist type outlets I speak of the factory in session.

Well, it has been.

When I had finished all of these I thought not to offend delicate sensibilities so typed up an explanatory card for those puzzled by such acronyms as follows:

WTF: Where's The Fish?

FFS: For Fish Sake.

OMG: Oh My Goodness.

Here are a few samples of my wares:

As I was packing up both these and my cards (and so many of my cards have been sold I have very few remaining) I thought to myself - I haven't aired out my real camera since Ansa died so I immediately charged it up. It's time for some new cards and poems. I will leave it in my car and use it for some local sights and sounds in my beautiful city and possibly find some new markets.

There is no greater thrill to me than selling works of my own creation.

Friday, August 03, 2018

Sweet and Sour

The world is in a frightful mess I think. When I allow myself to think.

I'm avoiding my newsfeeds. I just don't want to know how Trump is going to get his way again, how he will evade justice, how he will have his slavering mobs adore him as he screams Fake News! It sours up my life and I'm too old for this shyte.

I retweet the odd item. I disengaged from Facebook until the fall. But I really don't miss it.

I meditate daily. Today's was refreshing in that it reminded me that the world is a chaotic place, always has been. We fancy ourselves as bringing order to everything but we just can't. Not even to our bodies where rogue cancer cells may lurk ready to careen around our internal hidden corridors or alternately block our veins and arteries and squeeze our heart until it fails.

So in a Barbara Bushy way I realize that I need to think pretty thoughts. So I started up my little knitting factory again (my stuff really sells well). To start I made a lovely little shawlette for my sister who has her first and long awaited grandgirl of her very own now. So I incorporated herself, her husband, her four adult children and her darling grandgirl into the shawlette. I get hot looking at it (it is scorching out her on The Rock and in Ireland) but in winter it will be welcome when all this heat is behind us.

I will share the other products later before I ship them off to the shop for sale. I believe y'all may enjoy them.