Friday, December 31, 2010

Bloggerstock: What Inspires You?

It's Bloggerstock time again!  I'm hosting the lovely Lily (see below) with a really great post!  Feel free to visit my post which is, once again, hosted over at Michael's blog!  Isn't this a great topic for the end of the year?  On to the inspiration!

Why, hello there! My name is Lily and I write for a little blog called Is it too early for a martini? I’m writing on “Because or Why Not” because both Kris and I signed up for a cool project called Bloggerstock. Each month there is a different topic. This month, the topic is “What or who inspires you to do whatever it is that you do be it blogging, writing, school or your job”. Be sure to check out my blog and read what inspires Riley from Wayfaring Warrior
Different things and people inspire me to do different things. 
But the one who takes the cake is my little sister, Alejandra. 
Even before she was born, I always wanted a sister. I hated that I only had an older brother, and that he was kind of mean to me. He would punch me and take my allowance. And then would threaten me with another punch if I told my parents that he took my money. He stopped taking my money when I learned to punch back, and punch back harder. 
Before my sister and I become friends, I was a typical kid experiencing middle-child syndrome. My older brother is the only boy so he got all of attention, and my sister was the baby so she got alot of attention. And in my mind as a 10 to 19 year old, I could be doing flips in the middle of the street with on coming traffic and no one would care. 
But I was wrong. 
I guess I never noticed it; I was in my own little world. Unnecessary partying in high school, not focusing enough through my first round of college, and being too busy trying to find someone to fix a broken heart. Though I thought no one was paying attention to the destructive things I was doing, I had a little sister who was growing up and was taking notes. I had to sit back and reevaluate my life and how I was making decisions. Do I want my little sister to feel like me? Do I want her to think that what I’m doing is right? No and no.  
To me it’s kind of sad that I didn’t realize that she looked up to me. I feel dumb that it didn’t even cross my mind. I am her only sister. And I am her older sister. I never wanted to be a role model for anyone. Nor did I know how to be an older sister. Still, I stepped up. 
My sister is now at the same age where I started doing things that, in hindsight, I regret. I told my boyfriend that I didn’t want her to do the same things I did, and that she should enjoy her childhood. I do think I grew up way too fast- kind of like all the Disney kids, but not as glamourous … but a bit more alcohol and drugs. His response was “then you have to give her the talk”. I didn’t think that was my job. She has parents… they could do it… but then he responded with “who do you think she’ll listen to more? Your dad and stepmom or you?”.  I hate it when he’s right.
I’m not trying to toot my own horn, or say I’m the best sister ever. Because I’m not. I’m human, and I have a low patience level. I try to be as best as I can. 
She inspires me because I see myself in her. I want her to be better than me. Even if that means she’s actually better than me.  
As two of my favorite people have said (Kanye West and Tyler Sutherland): “One bad bitch from the Chi-city, crusin down Lakeshore doin’ at least a buck fity”. Okay, maybe not so much. But I do live in Chicago, but obey all speed limits, unless I’m running late for work. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Bitter New Year To You


New Years isn't something that was ever tradition when I was growing up.  I remember bitterly spending it with my family.  Or, even more bitterly yelling it in with our lamps defiantly on and my sister's wrist watch reminding us the rest of the world was partying.  Once we avoided a party because the adults were going to have one upstairs, and us kids were going to party in the basement.  Family first.  I was bitter about that, too.

As I got older we spent New Years eve playing pool in our church basement or watching the ball drop in New York through my Grandma's television.  One of the more memorable was being at the top of a pine tree.  My sister and cousins perched on branches below me.  Driving around town and trying to set off car alarms.  I was bitter then, as well.  My friend group had intentionally uninvited me.  Or fighting on an Israeli beach at midnight in a country that doesn't really acknowledge the holiday.  Or getting slurpees on a volunteer program that required us back by midnight.

I've kicked off too many of my years bitter and lost.  My toughest break-up happened on a New Years day.  Despite all this I still anticipate the holiday with a sort of respectful admiration.  Maybe I have a little glimmer of optimism that insists on the possibility of fresh starts, dynamic celebration and successful resolutions.

Or maybe I'm just a fool.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Just This

If you read this blog this month there's nothing to indicate that I celebrate Christmas, let alone that it's altogether and absolutely my favourite holiday of the year. 

If you read this blog this month you wouldn't know how proud I am of my Christmas tree.  You wouldn't know the joy I find in Christmas music, the people who smile at you on the street.  A white season, gift wrapping and baking.  Hockey on our outdoor rink, snowboard plans, cards thanking the people in my life for a year of memories.

I savour tradition.  Stockings, paper snowflakes adorning the windows, real ones caught in my hair.  Smiles, Charlie Brown's Christmas, memories.

So, I am sorry.  If you read this blog this month I never shared any of this.  As usual, it's also the busiest part of the year.  Ironic that Christmas day is when I get time to sit and type this to you.  Really all I want to say is something you've heard a million times before.

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Middle of Nowhere in the Middle of the Night

Dec. 31st, 2009, 11:30 PM.  I needed change.

11:30 PM and someone said we should climb the lookout.  In the middle of a wildlife reserve.  In the dark.  We were in the middle of this nowhere anyway.  We were tired of flying down an icy hill on over-sized tubes and throwing gasoline on the fire.  I was tired of chocolate Christmas baking and being the oldest in the group.  I was tired of doing doughnuts in empty parking lots and hours spent running in a mild winter out of pure frustration.

twenty five of us piled into four cars and sped down to the empty reserve and a clear starry sky.  We ran down clapboard paths over dead winter marshes and up the four flights of steps to the open top.  We made it, breathless, by midnight.

I screamed at the emptiness and my small town's lights in the distance.  I grabbed my blonde friend and we looked at each other, jaws set.

"Get lost, 2009.  We're so done with you!"

She was going to Calgary.  I was going to Arizona.  I haven't seen her since.  I miss her, but I know her life has gone the way she wanted.

And myself.  I just didn't know.   I'm not my brothers that were hugging me, lifting me, threatening to throw me over the rail.  I'd given up construction long ago.  I was twenty three.  I'd seen the world.

Twenty four of us yelling in the new year.  Crammed in an open look-out tower blindly hugging and looking forward to 2010.  And me.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Foreign Flavour

I think I think I like you
'Cause I really think you're cute
You're sweet but you are edgy
Like you're trying to improve

You smile, hold the door,
but in every conversation
I'm really very certain
you swear without realization

You're genuinely thoughtful,
even when I know you're wasted
Like a new and foreign flavour
that I've never really tasted.

You wear death metal t-shirts.
Yeah, you seem a little shady,
but you really are exceptional
at helping out old ladies.

I think I think I like you,
and I know you think I'm hot.
So this may seem a little crazy...
I won't give us a shot.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Brave Enough

A string of lights in a summer evening.  She's brave enough to dream.  Like dreaming is enough.  ---


The hours feel long.  Endless smiles for endless customers.  Peppermint gum and a particular aptitude with the Numerical keyboard.  Something to be proud of.  Gossip with the next cashier over the party last night or customers best forgotten.

Jostin in deli is leaving, she's been told.  She'll miss his smile when he comes through her till with a sandwich for lunch.  She'll miss quirking her eyebrows when he offers her a ride home in his pickup truck.  And saying that she'd rather walk, thank-you.  She'll miss the reminder of an awkward kiss between the shelving in the back before Julie asked him out.  Before he said yes.

She's drafted a cover letter.  She'll make the deli position hers.  It's opportunity.  To learn to slice peppercorn turkey, weigh salad and hang her white apron on her own hook in the hallway.  And benefits.  After two years it's certainly time.

This is where she's going.  But dreaming...  Dreaming is what she does in the silence of home.  When she gets caught in the quiet with her guitar in her lap.  And on lunch breaks.  Lying on the picnic table.  Eyes closed, salad forgotten and sun on her face.

Winter isn't for lunchtime naps and dreams.  Winter is for reheated soup in the staff room.  It's icy breaks and cigarettes on the plastic chairs outside.  There's nothing better then her burgundy trench with the lighter in the pocket.  It's winter.  She doesn't care.

Her favourite season.  She forgets how to dream.

---One light fades.  It fails.  The string drops into darkness and a wounded socket.  Just a moment, a shadow.  Not even a hope.  One day she'll let it go forever.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Change Your Life Challenge

So I signed up for this.

This month's challenge is this.

The strange thing is that I don't actually consider vegan/vegetarianism healthy.  
I think meat should be a integral part of most healthy diets.
Not to even begin to discuss dairy and eggs.

Also, it takes more then a week to change habits.

But, I signed up.  Mostly because I like the idea of challenging myself every month.  
And going vegan will certainly be a challenge.
I don't figure a week can hurt much.  
Also, my new room mate is vegan, and I think understanding is a good thing.

So, I'll be going animal byproduct free within the next few days. 
And I'm excited to see where else this goes.
If you feel like joining us check out Monica's Challenge for yourself. 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

This Entire Post is Borrowed


I thought how unpleasant it is to be locked out; and I thought
how it is worse, perhaps, to be locked in.

A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.

-Virginia Woolf

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Biggest Role Boobs Will Ever Play on My Blog

I want feedback.  I specifically want feedback from my male readers out there.  I'm sure you guys exist.  Even if I never do post boobs for real (sorry for the tease).  But I have a very specific question.

First of all, I've never watched Jersey Shore.  Not even a little piece of a little clip of the show.  But the general impression I've formed about the show made me think it would fit this post well.  Here's what confuses me.  I know girls who channel Jersey Shore with all their might.  You know.  Pale lipstick, excessive eyeliner, trashy hair extensions, that disturbing orange hue, single line eyebrows.  That kissy face.  I wish I was rude gutsy enough to snag some of their ten million pictures off Facebook and show them to you.  But I'm not, so these shots of Jersey Shore are gonna have to do because, frankly, it's pretty much the same thing.
So, the thing is, I've never heard a guy say they like that crap.  As a girl I honestly think it's a little disturbing (and I feel the same way about the fake orange males wearing Ed Hardy and trucker hats).  It's trashy.  Period.  So, guys tell me they like girls who act like ladies.  They say they like girls who can rock the natural look.  They say all sorts of stuff, and then chase after girls who leave the house looking like, well...  Check attached images.  Then...  then they get all over these girls like their the hottest things their poor horny selves have seen all year.  I've seen it, and I know you have too.  

I have three theories.

1.  Boys are shallow.  They think they like genuine girls because they like the idea of a genuine girl.  They also don't quite understand how much of the Jersey chicks are fake.  

2.  They actually like genuine girls.  However, the thing is that genuine girls take a little more work.  The Jersey chicks are easy.  What other kinda girl would put this out there?  And, really, why go hard when you can go easy?

3.  The Jersey chicks just know how to play they guys.  They know when to smile, when to flash boob. And, oh yeah, they know how to flirt.  Flirt like you'll get somewhere.  They know how to make any boy feel like he really matters.  Like sex is the biggest objective in their life.  And, yeah.  It probably is.

So tell me, guys.  Why does this work on you?  And girls, do you get it?  Or are you a little bit Jersey yourself (in which case I do apologize).

Don't be surprised if this post only survives a week or two.  I doubt I'm brave enough to risk the Jersey chicks in my life eventually stumbling across it.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Abortion, My Thoughts

I'm confused as to why the abortion debate is considered a religious or feminist issue. Either an unborn baby is a life, or it's not. If it is, terminating a pregnancy is wrong by every standard. Abortion is a humanitarian issue.

It's dangerous to draw a line defining when life begins. Is it when a fetus can feel pain? Is it the first time it cries? It's first breath of oxygen? The day it enters the third trimester?

I'm aware that pain is caused every day to women who attempt their own abortions. I'm aware that rape and marital molestation result in countless pregnancies. I would never ever argue that these are anything but tragedies.

It's unfortunate that sex, even uninvited, can result in accidental life. It's unfortunate that birth control fails, or isn't readily available in parts of the world where population control is needed most. It sucks that life sends us challenges, responsibilities and mistakes. And it really hurts to realize that this is passed onto the helpless little lives that result.  We need to work on fixing these issues.

Regardless, hundreds of thousands of abortions exist simply to terminate an inconvenience. And yes, illegal abortions can kill women. Abortion is a possibility and a fact. It's not going away. But here's the thing. If I believe that a fetus is a child. If i believe that the emotional upheavel experienced after a miscarriage or an abortion isn't simply a coincidence. If I believe it's a life, then advocating for the privilege of ending it is a terrible injustice.

I'm not pro life because I'm religious. Certainly not because I'm anti-woman.  I am pro-life because I have an adopted little brother I love into a million pieces.  Because I think that even those without voices need rights.  It's an opinion I'll never apologize for.

I'm pro life because I believe in living.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Monday, November 01, 2010

'Cause That's How We Roll

Guess what I did?

You didn't guess.

That's okay.  You wouldn't anyway.  I entered a singing contest.

It better be fun.  I managed to convince a couple friends to join me.  One of them has the voice of that's as rich and strong as hot honey.  Hearing her sing puts me to sleep.  I wish I had a recording I could let you hear.

Which means I'm not going to win, but I'll have a good time.  That's o.k.  Who enters competitions with an intent to win, anyway?  I just love music, and my voice has always been my strongest instrument.  I sing without realizing it.

So now I'm hitting up Youtube Karaoke to see what I'm actually capable of.

That's all I wanted to say and only  'cause I think it's cool.  Sorry :)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Halloween Wedding, Asian Justin Bieber and a White Belly Dancer.

Most of last week I was thinking to myself, "I should really do one of those trendy 'last minute costume option' posts."  I love dressing up.  Unfortunately, I also kinda suck at it.  I'm far too last minute and lacking in basic creativity.  So, lucky for you, I refrained.

I did work today.  One of my co-workers came in with her entire wedding (three family members, in costume), post wedding.  They got married in the park on Halloween.  Her dress was exactly like the picture at right, only purple instead of silver.  Her husband was rigged out in top-hat, bungee boots, leather pants and one exceptional coat and tails.

unorthodox, to say the most.  And I was thrilled for them.  It's so them, and they should tie the knot exactly the way they want.

Later I heard a little about a juvenile party my littl brother and his cohorts are throwing in a pasture.  It sounds like a lot of trouble.  What else is Halloween for?  I was cracking up as I was told about the little Asian kid dressing up like Justin Beiber.   My older brother gave me a play on how he was standing in front of the mirror trying to make himself white.  And turning out like Barbie.  Ah well, it's only a short step from there to Beiber.

And my Halloween hasn't even started.  Now I'm off to break out my Aladdin pants, scarves and eyeliner.  It's gonna be a good Halloween.  Hope yours, by time you read this, was appropriately creepy. 

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


I've always said I don't get depressed.  I've always stuck by this statement pretty well.  I do, however, get pissed off.  Seems like this time of year I end up frustrated at almost everything.  It's like I'm  suddenly realizing that summer was far too carefree.  And that somewhere, in the suntanned bliss of eternal youth, I turned yet another year older.

I wish it didn't happen.  I get to thinking about where I am, what I'm doing, and who exactly that makes me.  Very very dangerous questions.  Especially when you don't have good answers.  And dammit, I do not have good answers.

I like to redirect my energy.  I love skating hard and scoring goals.  I like getting slammed into the mats by kids with brown belts.  I like pretending the little things I've accomplished matter.

I love arguing.  Always have, always will.  It's a skill I've honed until I'm pretty good at it.  Which is too bad, because that's not a beneficial thing.  Especially when I don't have anyone to argue about anything worthwhile with.

Either that or I employ frighteningly brilliant avoidance tactics.  The fact that I have no television doesn't even help that much.  I'm just that good.

And I don't get Seasonal Effective Disorder.  Yeah.  Right.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


Today I miss Silent Arrow. I miss almost everything about it. Dancing with poi in the courtyard, walking into Mitzpe to bring back grocery staples and asking for two reciepts in my best Hebrew. Laughing at absolutely everything all the time. I miss talking to Ori late at night and having him think I was insightful, despite his superior mastery of my language. I miss lighting the candles or stealing Sason's mp3 and listening to his techno because we didn't have other music. I miss the hand drums and the guitar.

I've talked about the desert before.  There's something about the silent sky, the blazing stars, the eternal aridness that calms this mountain girl. Silent arrow is where I learned this.  I'm not sure why this is so, or why I'd never learned it earlier in Mexico.  Perhaps I never needed it before.  Maybe it was being abandoned when I was vulnerable.  I miss sitting over the crater talking to Sason all night about our futures because we knew we'd never talk again.  I miss the stoners and the wanderers and being on my own.  

If you ever make it to Mitzpe Ramon say hello for me.

I miss feeling like I could be gone forever, or as long as I needed to be.  I miss walking barefoot over sun warmed stones.  I miss chopping crates for firewood and stoking the fire late at night when I should've been curled up beneath my hippi blanket.  I miss doing the dishes because my best friend cooked us dinner.  I miss endless cups of desert tea and I miss arak mixed with grapefruit juice.  I miss smoking sheesha with the kids who drove down on weekends.  

I miss the freedom and knowing everything would be alright.

All photos through Hetzbasheket on Facebook

Friday, October 22, 2010

Well, now. Buenos Dias.


Left to my own schedule I stay up later and get up later until I'm frightfully near nocturnal. Fortunately life requires me to stay on a slightly more realistic time frameI'm really not a morning person, and I never will be.  Maybe this is partly because I've always refused to embrace caffeine.

I have learned to detest the sound of an alarm clock more then almost anything else. Bed suddenly seems the best place in the world. I will gladly hate morning song birds.  And don't get me started on those cheerful people happily belting out their "good morning"s. 

Once I'm up and about, though, freshly showered and munching on toast and homemade jam it begins to seem as though anything else would be just a waste of time. 

Morning is the most productive part of just about any day. At least if I manage to rub the sand out of my eyes.  It's a great time for thoughts, and also the best in which to spot a sunrise.  Funny how that works.  I like watching the world coming alive.  I'll never actually manage to regularly get out of bed early for a morning run or even a cup of tea on the back deck. I'll just have to take the moments between the snooze button and my true day's beginning to gather my wits and warm up to the day.

I also might want to work on heading to bed a bit earlier.  Something that is easy to avoid until the alarm goes off and I consider the benefits all over again.

Of course, the fact that I'm posting this at 1:00 AM might be an indicator to how that would actually go.

I have to thank Riley for causing me to post this.  She's written out a highly effective blog review for me which has resulted in the subscribe button and About page now on my blog.  I will be working on implementing a few other changes over the next little while.

I've been known to recommend her blog before, which is a really good read.  But now I'm also going to recommend her reviews.  Well worth it if you're actually serious about improving your blog. 

Friday, October 15, 2010

It Ain't Just an Excuse

I like being busy.  The ironic bit is that I'm not good at motivating my free time.  I need to find something that will push me, that I can get involved in.

I like talking about deadlines.  It makes me feel important.  I like having to reference my schedule.  What it comes down to, I think, is that I enjoy being productive.  I thrive of knowing I'm getting things done (and maybe a little bit of stress).  And keeping busy allows me to forget that I'm staying in one place.  I like forgetting stuff sometimes.

But if left to my own devices I'll sleep in 'till ten and stay up to late.  I'll get distracted by Youtube, novels, and my guitar.  When I get frustrated with my wasted time I'll go for a pathetic run and maybe check my mail and pay my bills.

And I hate that.  Procrastination is my worst trait.

I like when writing and a cup of tea is time to unwind instead of it being something I've accomplished.

Yeah, I was a bit of a burnout when I didn't know what I was doing, and it didn't work to go anywhere.  If I don't work, I'll go crazy.  And I know it.

So, I've packed up my schedule.  And it's doing me good.  Do you secretly like being busy?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

More Blogging BS

Here's the thing.  I get paid to blog, now.  Seriously, I do.  Not much.  Like, I'm not professional or anything.  But I get paid to blog.

Unfortunately it's just not here.

So, the job blog is actually not too exciting.  It's not quite as creative and fun as one.  So, as you can see, I'm still completely into Because or Why Not.  It's the blog I really care about, even if it doesn't make me any money.

Just, you know.  Bear in mind that I'm force posting every weekday.  It's a little tiring, and everything.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010


I mismatched my hair elastics sometimes just to piss you off .  Because you needed to lighten up and learn that red and orange on my braids was fun.  Sometimes I pretended I didn't care, and you didn't call my bluff.  Sometimes I held your hand in the backseat and decided to think that no one noticed.

Sometimes I told people it was nothing.  I told them what I couldn't stand so they would believe me.  I told myself it wouldn't happen, and wasn't happening, and would never happen.

Sometimes I got tired of being the strong one.

You let me cut your hair, and wore the shirts I got you.  I looked in your eyes.  That was my mistake.  Your eyes, your phone voice, your endless adoration.

Oh, did I say endless?  My mistake.  Oh, no, wait.  Yours.

Monday, October 04, 2010

A Blog Rant About Blogging (and awards. See how that works?).

"Actually, don't be surprised if I blog more, and better quality."

Nobody thought it prudent to call my bluff?

Maybe the blogging honeymoon is over.  Mostly, I have other preoccupations.  Really boring ones that provide pretty lousy blog fodder.  I still love my Because or Why Not, though.  It just takes a lot of work and focus to write truly quality posts.  

Blogging has brought great things into my life.  Ideas, distraction, people, a really great creative outlet.  I'm not about to give that up.

You know what I haven't done for a while?  Just had a good rant.  And now I'm ranting about blogging.  Classy.  

Here's a new one!  It comes from a fabulous blog Called The Far Too Important Blog.  Best off all, Jeff gave me "art."  Which makes it my best award ever (of course I had to go post that on my crappiest least-artistic post of the year).  Also got an award from another really good blog called Pretend You Don't Read Me.  How do they come up with such great names?  It's an award I've posted a few times already though, so I'll just tell you to go visit Ella.  She's very cool.

As usual, three blogs in my reader along these lines that I also recommend...

The Wayfaring Stranger- Sometimes Riley's attitude pisses me off, and best of all she really doesn't care.  I'd never say that to her face, because she makes it clear she could kick my butt.  Anyway, she writes a good social commentary blog from a point of view that's occasionally different then mine.  And she's inspiring through her go-getter attitude.  What's not to like?

The Curiosities of a College Kid-  I've always liked this guy, even though we've never spoken.  He's often amusing, but clearly intelligent.  Also, he provides some good insight seeing that he's in Senegal right now.

You Can Read Me Anything- I have loved Rish's blog for a long time now.  She is of substance herself, and that doesn't stop occasional raw heartfelt honesty combined with brilliant writing skills.  She's quite simply a passionate person and that comes across in her posts.  Do yourself a favour and go scan through what she's written.

Seriously though, they're all good.  And now, well, I'll have to connive some decent posting myself so the top of my page isn't a blog rant/award post.  It'll happen.  

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The (No) Internet Experiment

Here's the thing.  I like the internet.  It's an endless resource ever at my fingertips.  So I abuse it.  I don't even want to know the amount of time I've spent online over the last year.  If I am away for a week I don't have any trouble going offline, but I spend far to much time in front of my screens when the option is there.

Let's face it.  There is much I want to do.  dreams I want to pursue, thoughts to be had, family and friends I know I don't see enough of, cooking, music, cleaning, studying, exercise.  All far more worthwhile then catching up my FB feed or watching movies on youtube.  (hey, at least I don't have an actual television).

In short, I am so much closer to the person I want to be without the internet.

I'm not about to delete my facebook, or give up blogging or online courses or news sources.  I'm not doubting the online world is useful if we make it serve us the way we want it too.

This is, essentially, the first time with my own place and internet and computer. In the past I've relied on stops at friends and the library.  You know what?  It was better that way.

I love the outdoors.  I love conversation, adventures, life.  You know, the real version.  I'm just terrible for procrastinating it.

So, here's the plan.  For the next week I'll be online for no longer then half an hour each day (including my apps), outside of studying.  I'll still be blogging, but I'll just c/p from word.  Actually, don't be surprised if I blog more, and better quality.

I'll miss some of my mind numbing time wasting standard habits but we'll see.  Maybe I'll have to enact this as a standard part of my life.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Notebook Chronicles

The little bald one with the glasses is the regular.  I know him only as the milk truck man.  He actually wears a blue collar.  I like to think I belong in that class, despite my ripped t-shirt.  We make our living off the same industry.  His job occasionally overlapping mine.  But that is all.

The milk truck man.

We exchange pleasantries before most of the world has even woken.  "Good morning," and, "How are you today?"

This morning as I finished clean-up I felt like we shared a bond.  Both of us the working class.  Earning our keep at jobs we do well.  Keeping our hours and making sure you get milk on your morning cheerios.

I grinned at him.  As though, somehow, we knew a common secret.  It not occurring to me that it was a connection noted only in my mind that particular AM.  He probably only thought I was strangely cheerful at a time when usually I look forward to is going back to bed.

I leave our farm as the sun rises.  My part of the process complete for now.  He finishes loading the fruit of my labour and continues on, his day just beginning.

The milk truck man pulls up to another parlour as I crawl beneath the covers.

The feature where I let you read the ramblings of my past.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Randori, Newaza and Other Japanese Words I Don't Remember

All of me hurts.  Well, when I try to move.  This is specific to, but not limited to thighs, upper stomach, neck and upper arms.  Not to mention the bruises running pretty solid up my left arm.  Does that sound bad?  I think it's because that's the arm I usually break fall with.

Yeah, I'm back at judo. Item 46.

I might not be coming back with the obsession I had at 17.  I always wished I had a chance to start younger and train harder.  But, I've missed it.  Practicing this year will whip me back into some much needed shape.  I build muscle easily for a girl.  I miss my chiseled shoulders, and my masculine forearms.  Wait... what?

Maybe I'll fall in love with the sport all over again.  And if not I'll be able to leave some energy on the mat.  My Mom was never a big fan of her teenage daughter rolling around with sweaty guys, or the part where we try to choke each other unconscious.  But she once said it was good because it was an outlet for some of my fight.

if nothing else I'll leave healthier (unless I tear something in my knee).  Right now that's hard to remember when sitting down necessitates a five inch uncontrolled fall.  In a good way.

Maybe you'll see why I find judo beautiful.  This is the international competition scene, no choreography here.  I can understand why a match would be dull for someone who isn't a judoka, so feel free to check out these highlights.  Bobby says to warn you to turn on the mute.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

I Done Got My Schoolin' at Home

I was home schooled.

A lot of you already know that, on some level or another, but I want you to tell me your reaction.  What biased did your mind jump to when you read that sentence?  What are your preconceived ideas and judgements?

See, I still don't really seem to get it.  Over the years I've bragged about being a home schooler.  Now it's less relevant to my life (hello adulthood.  You and I are old friends now) and I prefer to think of it as advocating. 

I'm also starting to realize what home schooled actually means.  Or, rather, what people think it means.  And, yes.  I am personally aquainted with some of these stereotypes.  The ten kids, denim jumpers, headcoverings.  Classical piano, Rod and Staff (err, that's a curriculum), and repressed social development. 

But... But, that's not what home schooling was for me.  There were a lot of "normal" experiences that I didn't have.  A good chunk of my sex ed came from magazines and late night talks with my friends.  I never shoplifted gummy candies on my lunch break or smoked cigarrettes under the stairs.  Personally, I don't think missing this out did me much harm.  Most of my "home schooled" friends have grown into functional, responsible, intelligent adults.  The ones with the most trouble are the families I've known that have been extreme (see above paragraph).  Honestly, those kids often go crazy, but do you blame them?

Those of us with a better balance may question our social roles a little earlier and learn to make out in the backseat or a car a little later.  But, in the end, we usually seem to work things out just fine.

Education at home is a concept that has continued to capture my attention.  I have no interest in working in education, but the idea of alternative education fascinates me.  I have little tolerance for anyone closed minded enough to override home school as even a possible beneficial option without any previous experience or reason.

Do I think everyone should be schooled at home?  No.  Not every parent is anywhere near capable of that commitment.  Do I think home school is ideal in every way?  Not even a little bit.  I do, however, think the public system only serves a certain portion of the population very well.  Obviously, it's a one size fits all, and has to be that way.  And that, essentially, is why I continue to support home education.

The potential for a personally tailored education is endless.  So much so that I can see how mistakes could be made, and parents could easily feel overwhelmed.  There is much to take into consideration.  This is also why I'm bothered by such a sweeping generalization of home schoolers.  There is no norm.  I have some of the typical traits, but not many.  Where I'm from almost has a separate culture just for us.  We always walked the line.

I, personally, am thankful for my home tailored education.  There is much I would do different if I went back.  Would hope to do different if I were ever to have children of my own.  And high school should be (and was for me) a personal option.  Proof of academic achievement and a social structure are two aspects of home schooling that must be thought out where there is rarely need in a public school.

Just, please, tell me this.  What do you think when I tell you I'm a home schooler?  Is all this defense necessary?

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Autumn Beats Me Up

I know it's still the end of summer.  A season for freedom and carelessness and passion.  I know I was jumping from cliffs into beautifully fresh water this weekend.  Around this time we're usually melding into a beautiful Indian summer.  However, this year I've already tasted the crisp tang of fall.

The first emotion autumn brings me is an extreme urge to move on.  Summer's dying and I need to travel, quit my job... leave.  I need to learn, wander, wonder.  Time to work and move on and join autumn sports.  September is a learned habit to pack up, start school, travel, move.


And then, or at the same time, I start to want to settle down.  Cooling air makes me want fuzzy blankets and someone to share them with.  I want fall colours and cable stitch sweaters to wear with my bluejeans.  I want to make jam from our harvest, collect firewood, hunt and knit burnt orange touques to keep me warm through the winter cold.  I want an acreage and an orchard.  Some dark cool dirt to dig in and a fireplace to come inside to.

Settling in.

Here we can climb wooden ladders with laden canvas totes.  Gala, Honeycrisp, Delicious, Macintosh.  You better believe I can bake a mean pie.  I can milk a cow, make yogurt, cut meat to stock the freezer.  I've pressed juice, made pickles and dug potatoes.  This is where I'm from.

But I have a backpack by my bed.  And a tendency to search airline tickets when I'm supposed to be paying bills.  I have mind-stretching universities in my bookmarks and a tank full of gas that begs me to use it every time I drive to the edge of town.  Rusty Spanish that begs to be stretched out.  Energy to wear out on the ice, the judo mats, the ski hill.

Fall brings out both sides of my excess energy.  Estrogen and testosterone in a mad and endless clash. This fall neither will be much of an option.  I'll need my silly little side projects.  No month long road trips or beer in hostel basements.  No international markets, or no running my own local booth.  I'll be wearing out my fight in a dojo and wondering why I'm settling for middle ground.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Things To Love About Road Trips

~ The opportunity to actually get tired of driving.

~ Taking photos (see left).

~ Ice tea and ice cream from greasy gas stations.

~ Flea markets, roadside stalls and garage sales.

~ Young international hostel crowds.

~ Feeling like a rebel spending nights in the car.

~ Adventure.

~ Couchsurfing.

~ City streets and checking off a list.

~ Coast line, mountains, plains, rock formations and sunsets.

~ Hiking, swimming, stretching after sitting too long.

~ Fresh visits with old friends.

~Never feeling restless.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Dance Like Summer Will Never End

We'll blow the speakers by the end of the night playing last year's dance hits.  Everyone is here, now.  The kid in the fedora wanting to play dj.  There's always one.  The gorgeous indie girl kissing her boyfriend on the bale couch.  It's covered with a denim quilt.  The hipster, the player, the thinker.  Tonight this barn is the place to be.

The big dipper is visible through the door to this loft. I can lean on old silver wood and breathe in the field air. Fill my empty can from the hose or sit in the other room by an overturned washer to gossip with my best friend or chill with the guys.

We'll line dance, slow dance, and do the Macarena. Someone will teach me the Cha Cha and someone else the square step. Mostly we'll just dance and laugh and flirt a little.

It feels a little bit like prom night in skinny jeans and tank-tops. And a little bit like a bush party with a dance floor.  A little bit like the club we're trying to imitate.  A little bit alive and a little bit young. Christmas lights and a strobe light. Tonight we won't complain about the local nightlife. Tonight we've created our own.

You learn to love the summer nights here. The cool breeze on sweaty skin. An outdoors far too big to hold. Racing cars across the flats, evening fires by the lake, long talks and love and travelers to share a glance with. Autumn comes to soon.

I apologize for not taking any pictures of my own.  I came nowhere near finding a photo that captured this post properly.

This week I am Mama M's date from over at My Little Life.  Makes her the hottest Mom on my block.  I'm honoured, and a big welcome to all my visitors!

Also, I told you to visit The Spiraling Chronicles and leave a comment.  For my favourite followers in the world you're all pretty disobedient.  You're still the best, but you might want to think about it.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

That There is My Sister.

I know I owe you all some halfway decent writing.  But first, I get to introduce two cool things in one post...

TBG winner and my sister's blog!  Yup, they're the same thing.  Don't worry, though.  I didn't tell anybody until judging took place.

You've heard me talk about Meg.  It would be impossible not to.  I've fought with her and hugged her more then anyone else in the world.  I've faced Spanish ghettos at night and I've conquered Scottish ruins with her.  As is often the case with two siblings so close together, and of the same gender, we're dynamically different.  Except for those ever present family influences and tendencies.

Anyway, she started blogging just for this give.  You should really read her top post.  But if you want to see the whole story of her give, including vlogs and all, click TBG label and start at the bottom.  Please comment so she knows you exist!

I'm sure you'll agree it was a little unfair of me to unleash that organized motivated fury on our little contest.  And you'll also see why she took first prize.

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Joys of Public Service

My sister relayed a piece of urban myth last night around the dinner table well I was visiting.

A male flight attendant had a passenger complain to him about her overhead luggage before take-off.  As the story goes he turned to her, stated, "Have a good flight you F***ing Bitch," and grabbed two bottles of beer.  He then proceeded to jump down the escape chute and run out onto the runway.*

He got arrested for creating a disturbance, or endangering airport security, or something.

I sat and laughed.  Meg sat and grinned.  The rest of my family looked at us like we were idiots.

If you don't think that's funny, then you don't understand and you may want to consider getting a service industry job.  At least short term.

Or at least realize you're not special, and actually being nice to anyone serving you will get you farther.**

*Unfortunately I can't find any news accreditation for this.  However, all I can think of is to google the "quote."
** We will sit in the back and laugh at you.  If you made our co-worker cry you'll probably pay.***
***Let it be noted that I am referring to previous jobs.  Not my current one.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

To Apply or Not to Apply?

Some of you know I have a job I'm not terribly excited about.  Don't get me wrong.  The people and the company are great.  There's just simply nothing challenging about the job that I'm doing and now that I've been there a bit the learning curve is closer to a straight line.

So, I have the opportunity to apply up.  It would be moving into the office side of things.  Balancing numbers, accounts, that sort of thing.  Traditionally, I'm not an office type... at all.  (I was 18 when I wrote that, though).  Last night I promised myself I'd write a list of pros and cons in the morning.  The morning is here (and gone), so in the interest of being a little more personal on my blog (and really hoping for a little feedback) I'll post it here.

Full time hours.
Variation in work (would mix with my current position).
New experience.

Not very experienced.
Commitment (I like the fact that I can justifiably give notice anytime).
Would probably end up hating office work.

Those are far less exhaustive lists then I thought they'd be.  Bear in mind that just because I choose to apply does not mean I'll get the job.  Another reason to just give it a shot?  The two last cons are the biggest ones, for me.

My sister says I too often do things because I think I should.  Rather then because I'm interested.  Or because I have a drive to book up my time.  I'm an odd sort of workaholic.  It has been refreshing to work fewer and better hours then I used to.  And for non-stressful management.  Although, the hours would still be good.

I'm just rambling now.  Your thoughts, please?

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Because We Don't Like the Way it Hurts

I was torn about embedding this so if you're going to watch this video then please also read the post.

Now I've only just got around to actually watching this music video, and it is full on pissing me off.  They have the attractive actors, the big names (hello Eminem and Rihanna), and all the documented passion of a physical relationship.

Is it just me, or are they enabling abuse?  Rihanna?  Seriously?  You never liked the way it hurt, and it's wrong for you to tell the seventeen year olds watching MTV that they should.

The worst is the conclusion reached...

"If she ever tries to fuckin' leave again I'm gonna tie her to the bed and set the house on fire."

I'm all for entertainment that enters a real life emotion.  I'll never cringe from an honest exploration.  And I'm not doubting that this one accurately portrays one side of the emotion involved with abuse.  It screams, actually, of relative accuracy.  Especially Eminem's dialog.

But I'm not impressed. I'm a fighter.  The hardest act is leaving.  That's what we need to be enabling.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Tracing Patterns

She likes the way her fingers trace patterns on her arm when she's nervous.  She likes the way he's started to do it, too.  She likes that his head is up, his shoulders back, and that she can still tell by the small circles working their way up onto her shoulder.

She likes that she fits in that crook of that shoulder.  That she can shoot darting looks of contempt, all 5'3 of her, and feel safe.  The circles will trace faster well jaws get clenched and chins raised.  She likes wearing leather boots and bandanna cuffs and feeling bad-ass.  And she likes that if she could choose to wear heels and a summer dress it would still look good with his jeans and black t-shirt.

She likes that he's in control.  At least right here, right now.  And that she could turn it around by sliding her own hand down his back.

They are like this.  Her hands pushed deep in her pockets.  Nonchalant and brooding.  Comfortable.  Everyone knows them.  Not by name, just by the toques and bored glares.

You know they're not going anywhere.  The best part is that they don't care.  And, if they don't care you've got nothing on them.  They can own it, here.  Get off their main street.  Leave their concrete bench alone.  You don't want to sit there among broken glass anyway.

She doesn't remember when he first put his arm around her.  She knows it was somewhere back in grade nine.  Probably around the time she first started getting stoned on lunch break.  Back then when she wore her Silver jeans every single day.  Leaning against the chain link fence at the back of the school.

What she will always remember is sitting in the back of employment workshops, his arm around her.  She'll remember wanting to practice an interview, but making snarky comments instead.  It's the way they are. Learned complacency.

She likes it this way too much.  Needing it.  Suddenly realizing he also needs her.  She starts tracing circles on her arm.

An American Dropout inspired me to try my hand at a little more fiction.  It's always been my favourite to write, so don't be surprised if you see more.  I'll be sure to always label it as such.  Thoughts?

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

A Brief History of Because or Why Not

Honestly, this comes up if you Google Image Search
"Because or Why Not" 
That's right.  I named a post after my own blog.  It's a devious plan of mine, actually.  I'm a little upset that I can't google my own blog.  All sorts of other useless stuff comes up, but not Because or Why Not.  So part of me thinks that if I write a post with "Because or Why Not" in the title and scattered frequently throughout then maybe It'll eventually show up in the first twenty pages that I'm willing to look at.

Yes.  I'm confessing that I've googled my own blog.

Of course, it's my own fault for choosing a title like Because or Why Not.  I still really like the new title, I just am realizing no one will ever find it through googling "Because or Why Not."  Although, what kind of an idiot would google that combination of words anyway?  It's an ego thing.  There's cheaters out there like Stir-fried Dinosaur or Your Ill-Fitting Overcoat who get, like, the first suggestion.  Of course, they're also very interesting bloggers who have more to say then I do.  But other then that...

Because or Why Not spent years as Barefoot in Summer.  It was (another confession) The Cherry Life of a Tomboy for it's first two weeks.  Forgive me, I was sixteen.  Also had a brief stint as Cayenne or Vanilla.  Apparently at three AM I couldn't make the foodie connection.  It's used to be a clique blog complete with endless haloscan comments.

Late 2009 I came back to blogging.  Late March 2010 I discovered community blogging, and haven't looked back, yet.  I'm glad to have you!  Oh yeah, here at Because or Why Not.

Because or Why Not.  Because or why Not.  Because or Why Not.  Get it, Google?

So, I was gonna be all manly and post the first image that came up with a Google image search for Because or Why Not.  But then it ended up being this, and I realized there were much better looking ones available a few pages down.

Monday, August 02, 2010


I'm bored.

Bored of this town, bored of this internet, bored at my job, bored in this moment.

I know it's my fault.  I really believe that boredom is a choice.  So even though I want to make a million excuses about why I'm stuck this way I'll avoid it.  I don't like excuses.

So what's wrong?  What about everything I used to wish for time to do?  What about all the things I've achieved?

I always go through post-summer letdown.  It's just not supposed to happen 'till August is over.  Maybe it's these freak storms making me trade my tank-tops for sweaters.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

I Wish Before

I wish a million things,
and none of them forever.
I wish a hundred pieces
all of them brought together

I need this like tomorrow
so nothing is for sure
I'll beg it from the past
It all remains impure

Don't listen as I say this
I've told you all this finally
Perhaps we will reach silence
Release this now entirely

I wish a million distances.
I'll try to hold them close like this
I'll tell you what I want from you
You'll tell me it's all true

And then you'll let me go

Friday, July 30, 2010



I'm in love with summer thunderstorms.  They fill me with energy, and I'll shout out loud.  I love standing on the deck in the rain.  I love the powerful roll of thunder, or the dance of lightening.  I've been guilty of lying on my tin roof and watching the sky light up around me.

I've realized I don't very often write about what's actually happening in my life.  At least not often and not directly.  July has been brilliant to me.  I've camped like a gypsy in a field of wildflowers with people I love.  I've managed to get in every trip despite having a real job.

I spent a week at a music festival.  I saw bands I've listened to for well over a decade.  I acted a little bit fifteen.  I turned twenty-four.  Oh, did I forget to mention that?  This age jump seems more significant the the ones surrounding it.  I've dealt by ignoring it.  But I think I'm actually pretty at peace with it.  Other then the fact that I'm no closer to being set in life then I was five years ago.

July is never long enough.  I haven't hung out at the river, and I haven't dived into the lake nearly enough.  I haven't harvested a single cherry.

And now I sit and type towards the end of a summer storm.  The sun is coming out again.  It's the end of the July where I turned 24.  It means more to me then New Years.  More reflection, more need for direction.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Notebook Chronicles

(Today's Beautiful Source: Tracelegacy)

This place, it almost seemed familiar.  When I closed my eyes that all-to-familiar feeling would come rushing back.  For lack of better options I have come to think of it as the fresh-start feeling.  Feeling, emotion, opportunity.  Whatever you choose to call it.  I suppose that's what it was.

See, I'm an addict.  Most of us are.  Alcohol, novels, food, sex, adrenaline.  We have something we turn to again and again.  For me it was the "new life."  The places I have gone looking for it...  The forms it has taken.  I have been saved by too many religions, entered too many love affairs, started too many diets.  Each time re-convincing myself that this time I had found the one that would make all the difference.  Time and again I have ripped myself to pieces for the thrill of embraced opportunity.  Opportunity I forced to be there.

Why would this time be any different.  Did I think because I was aware more then ever that I could break out?  Addictions don't work that way, Sweetheart.  I'm indulging in my favourite form of the hit, and I know it.

Changing locations.  Replanting.  The rest of you know it as moving.  I have done it a few to many times.  I have been welcomed by the good neighbor committee many times.  Assured them as many that I was hoping to settle.  And I was.  Oh, was I.  But before to long things weren't new any more.  Not exciting.  The streets had been explored, the company met.  Things would start to feel stale.  Often it was an apartment of my own.  Occasionally a quaint small town.  Maybe it's that I want chances on the horizon.  Or maybe I feel a need to flee from every little mistake.

Today the street is empty.  Dead leaves rustle on this sidewalk.  I hate the onset of winter.  Everything seems so dead, so comfortable.  Not in the least vibrant.  Hibernation.  That's the word.  I hate it.

This new street in this new place.  With all this newness even the dismal sky can't completely suffocate  the thrill.  I should be inside unpacking.  I've found the cutest bungalow just outside town.  I think I'll have time to explore what I always believe I want to.  Painting, running, a little gardening.

"If you're still around," my new found pessimist murmurs skeptically in my ear.  I ignore it.  No need to further suffocate this chance of a high.

These are the posts where I let you glimpse random pages from my scribbles of the past.  Raw, young and often unfinished.  Remember, with this piece, fiction is often prevalent...