Life in the Slow Lane

Life in the Slow Lane

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Sorry I haven't posted recently but I have suddenly came down with a nasty tummy flu. I feel like ass. Hopefully I'll be more cognizant of my surroundings in a couple days. Hope you all are well.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Crush Your Cat's Head Friday-Scary New Smells

We're moving on up!
To the top!
To that deluxe apartment in the sky!

I am packing up Yoshi and moving out of my Hovel From Hell. I got the great news yesterday that I have been accepted as a tenant in a brand new artists’ building in a very fancy part of town I normally could never afford to live in. My new pad is about 40% larger with a proper kitchen and I even have closets and storage. I also have a balcony with a lovely view of all the boats in the marina. Can you imagine the difference between a brand spanking new architectural wonder and the 100 year old firetrap I have been living in over the last six years? A sparkly clean never been used before kitchen and bathroom -I am feeling all tingly about that part too. It is a concrete building which means I can actually experience the sensation of soundproofing and will no longer be woken every morning at 5:15 am by the sound of my upstairs neighbour pissing. No more wild parties and thundering video games from the frat boys downstairs. No more laziness and passive aggressive behavior from the caretaker, The Reign Of Terry. No more raccoons pooping on my fire escape.

I will admit I will miss the Ol’ Dumpster a little bit as I have made it my own with funky paint colours and a collection of perfectly fitting eclectic furniture. My future walls are beige. The carpets are beige. But I have in-suite laundry so I can suffer through. It is a little sad as my next-door neighbour/friend and I have been working on the front yard adding flowers and shrubs and many an hour has been spent out there pulling weeds and cutting back out-of-control foliage. It was just starting to look nice and we would get compliments from passer-by every time we were out there. There will be no more bitchy gossip sessions about how we are going to take over the house and make it a clean and fabulous place we know it could be.

Honestly, I gave up. I am sick of being embarrassed to have people over. I am sick of eating off my coffee table and not having the room for craft projects or having dinner guests or even falling into my furniture when doing yoga. I hate the shoddy hallways and dirty front porch and filthy carpets. I loathe the cottage cheese textured walls and ceilings. My new place is all smooth and clean and fresh.

I am also nice and high up on the 6th floor away from car exhaust and noise. My fridge is full sized and I have a proper stove and oven. My bathroom will actually be in my apartment. I don’t have to share a bathroom but mine is located across the hall right now in this weird and ancient house. How many times have I been caught out in my PJs by my neighbours when dashing to the loo or with spikey wet hair fresh from the shower? So many times I am not really even embarrassed any more when it happens.

I no longer will be blowing fuses when I use two appliances at once. I am now a grown up.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

And The Artist Is....

Well. Nobody got the artist right although some guesses were closer than others. Let me tell you who the artist is who painted this picture.

Orachai The Elephant

Yes, the painting was created by an elephant.

I honestly didn’t believe it at first but my cousin saw it with her own eyes and videoed it in person at the Mae Taeng Elephant Park in Chiang Mai, Thailand last November. She has proof. An elephant really did it.

Isn’t that the coolest thing EVER!??!!

So if you said it was a cat/Yoshi (like Circe, Twisted Uterus, Sheryl, and Kerri) you were partially right as cats and elephants are animals. If you were Ladybug and said a penis did it you were kinda right as it was a longish appendage that held the brush. Since nobody guessed correctly I will donate the prize money to The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald Tennessee.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Random Thoughts, Updates and a Contest

-I have decided I have a crush on Anderson Cooper. He is smart, passionate about what he does, dashingly handsome and totally gay. Typical guy I fall for. I knew it was lurve when I saw him on CNN interviewing the governor (I think) of Louisiana during the first days of Hurricane Katrina. She was blah blah blahing some platitude about how help was coming and he, right on the air, ripped her a new asshole. Did anybody see it? Anderson was obviously physically exhausted and emotionally distraught and very PISSED OFF and totally gave her shit about how people were, um, DYING on the streets while politicians passed the buck. It was beautiful and from that moment on my heart was his.

-I watched for the second time the fabulous Canadian documentary ‘The Corporation'. This little film is totally mind blowing and you will never shop at The Gap, drink Coke/Pepsi, watch Fox, or eat McDonalds with an easy mind ever again. HIGHLY recommend it.

-On a serious note I grew myself some eggs and tracked down and phoned my recently deceased ex-boyfriend’s sister. She was very kind and it turns out he died in a motorcycle accident. Totally not his fault as a van pulled out in front of him. So there you go. I have gotten over the shock and feel good about being able to express my sympathy to the family. I gave her my number in case my ex-friend (the wife) wants to talk to me. I doubt that will happen but I wanted to show that I was a big girl and not harboring any grudges. Never mind that I was super nervous and literally shaking the whole time I was on the phone.

-I got a wonderful painting as a gift from my cousin the other day and I just hung it in its new frame on my wall tonight. It is the coolest painting I have ever seen and I totally cherish it.


The first person who can identify the artist of my new painting will be sent a really cool prize. I am not going to tell you what the prize is as it is really too cool to talk about but rest assured, you will not regret expending the energy to type in a guess.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Really Red

Today I found myself doing something I never dreamed I would ever have to do.

I had to return a toilet seat. A used toilet seat. To the store where I bought it.

It wouldn’t stay attached to the toilet properly and tried to buck me off.

They were very good about it.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Tight Pants

What a day. I have been so uninspired lately which really makes no sense. I am feeling stronger and the sun has been shining so in theory I should be bursting with energy. Except I am not. Today I really had to iron a bunch of clothes but I laid on the couch, farted around on the computer and chatted on the phone instead. ALL DAY!!! The only thing that inspired me to get up, get dressed and get out was to drive through the take-out window of Wendy’s for a large Frostie. I REALLY needed a Frostie. Like NOW.

I treat PMS like a mugging. Just do what it says and nobody will get hurt.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Hugs and Kisses

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!

This last year has been a tough one and I cannot thank you enough for being there for me. Thank you for shaving my head. Thank you for sitting with me for my chemos and then staying the night. Thank you for cooking me special meals to tempt my nauseous tummy. Thank you for going to billions of doctor appointments with me. Thank you for cleaning and doing laundry and shopping and running errands for me when I was too tired to do it myself. Thank you for listening to all my symptoms and ailments in gory detail. Being a mom is hard enough but I think it is that much harder to take care of a very sick child. Well, I am not a kid anymore but I know I will always be your child. So thank you, Mom.


Mom at a chemo appointment with me.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Still Fresh

I wrote this post last year when I was just at the start of my cancer treatment journey. I was aware then that I was very grateful that I lived in Canada and that my care would be covered even though my work didn’t offer any extended health benefits. I had admitted to doubts that at maybe my care could have come a little faster but now that I am on the other side of it all I can say with complete confidence that my treatment was excellent. My doctors were caring. The nurses and technicians were wonderful without exception. Because I had to go on disability as I could not work all my prescription medications were 100% covered by the government. Even the $175 per day Neupogen shots. Yes, because healthcare is gov’t subsidized I didn’t get those shot preventively right from the beginning like some patients do but I got them fast enough when my blood counts went down. I am ok with that. Let me assure you that cancer medications are not cheap. Neither is chemo. I continue to go for check-ups without paying a dime. I am seeing an excellent surgeon for reconstruction that is entirely covered for me including at home nursing visits after my surgery. I was able to get a preventative bi-lateral mastectomy without argument even though it was only medically indicated that my right breast be removed. I felt supported by the health care system.

I honestly do not take these things for granted. I truly believe that because I didn’t have to worry about whether I could afford treatment my recovery was easier and far less stressful. I am so incredibly thankful and consider myself blessed.

Having gone through this health adventure so recently when I read this at Amanda B’s site I almost wept. This poor man, Chester, isn’t getting his basic needs taken care of like pain relief or proper nourishment or medical care and attention when he needs it most. His situation is absolutely heartbreaking. The fact that it is happening in a rich country like the US freaks me out. Yes, we Canadians have really high taxes but I can say we happily pay them knowing that it relieves us of worry when worry about money is the last thing we need. Being sick is hard and stressful enough.

Please go and donate any amount you can possibly spare to help this man. Because my own experience is still so fresh in my mind I cannot emphasize enough how offering Chester and his mom a little support so that he can relieve his pain, feed his body, rest in a clean, warm and safe bed and see a doctor will help him far beyond physical limits. It will ease his soul which all humans in his situation deserve.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Retinking It All

Well last year I very flippantly blogged about an old relationship I had where I found the love of my life in bed with my friend. I was light hearted and jokey about it but the fact is, at the time, the whole situation devastated me. I lost my live-in boyfriend, my close girlfriend and my home as I was the one who moved out that very same day. I was 22 years old and my idealistic view of love was shattered. Probably not a bad thing in theory but I just wish it could have happened in a gentler and more gradual way.

By no means was the relationship perfect. I had gone through a very severe depression the year before where I cried in bed the vast majority of the time. I was not easy to live with. While he did the best he could I can’t say that I received a lot of support and understanding from him. It didn’t really bring us closer together. But we stuck it out.

There were lots of other problems. We were too young. I was 20 and he was 24 when we met. We moved in together too quickly. It wasn’t one of those decisions based on a shared desire to take the relationship to the next level but due to convenience. My two room-mates and I moved into a large house with him and his two room-mates. It was to save on rent. Soon after we moved into an apartment on our own.

He had some serious personal problems as well that I found very hard to handle. He was terrible with money. For instance the landlord would inform me that the rent cheque had bounced. Well, I knew that I had given the boyfriend my half of the rent so he had blown it somehow. I would be freaking and he would totally minimize the situation. That drove me crazy. I would be fending off collection agencies due to his financial problems and then come home from work to a brand new big screen TV or stereo equipment he had bought and I was “a bummer” for not raving about it. It would drive me nuts.

His family was a bit of a disaster as well. It came to light that his father had sexually abused his sister through her teenage years. The mother knew about it and did nothing. There was a whole lot of denial going on which really bothered me. I didn’t really know how to handle it all. It scared me.

During all this, one day while at I was at work, a girl I knew from high school came in and we struck up a conversation again. I had really idolized her in school as she was very cool and knew good music and dressed really funky. So I learned she had just come out of a dysfunctional teenage marriage and we reconnected and fell into a close friendship were she would join me, my boyfriend and our room-mate (my boyfriend’s childhood friend) for dinner and weekend get-togethers and we all got quite close. One day she offered us an interesting living arrangement. Her family house had been tenanted due to her parent’s recent separation and the fact the kids had all grown up and moved out. The present tenants were moving and we could move in as a group for significantly less than we were all paying then. The house had a huge yard, was within walking distance to my work and it all seemed like a good idea. We always had so much fun together so wouldn’t it be great to have that 24/7? We all thought so.

We moved in, painted everything wild and crazy colours and I started getting a very bad feeling. I can’t really say I suspected anybody of cheating but I think I sensed a shift in loyalties and focus. My friend started budding into disagreements between me and my boyfriend and siding with him so I was really looking like the bad guy. One of our big discussions was about kids. He really wanted them and I didn’t. I felt too young and that I hadn’t got my education yet or done traveling like I wanted to. I was uncomfortable with his financial situation and didn’t think we could afford kids. Maybe in the future at some point but I just couldn't guarantee when I might want them. He wanted them really badly. Maybe not right that second but he wanted a promise and timeline that I couldn’t give. My friend, on the other hand, made no secret of the fact she was PINING for kids and totally sympathized with his plight. I really felt ganged up on.

One day we had had yet another wrenching discussion about kids where I couldn’t tell him when I would definitely want them. That afternoon he went off to work. My friend was working a similar shift and was having car problems so my boyfriend offered to drive her to work and pick her up after. I didn’t think anything of it. I expected them home by about 9:30 but they didn’t come. I waited with our other room-mate (his childhood friend) and worried. He worried too. We just didn’t know what was going on. Finally at about 2 am I asked him to drive me to my parent's place as I was really freaking. Interestingly I didn’t ever think something bad had happened like a car accident or something like that. I just knew they had gone off with each other. So I left my boyfriend a note saying that I didn’t know what was going on and that in light of our discussion that day I was uncertain what his disappearance meant. I wrote that maybe we were not meant to be with each other and that I was at my parent’s place. Apparently they came home sometime after 3 am. I fully expected him to come and get me once he arrived home but he never did. Early that morning I took the bus back to the house and went to our room. He wasn’t there. I knocked on my friend’s bedroom door to see if she was home and when she opened it there he was laying in her bed naked. He didn’t say a word to me. I was so shocked I walked away and my friend closed the door behind her and hid in the bathroom. I tried to get in again to confront him but the door was locked. So I just turned to her and told her that I hoped they both rotted in hell and I walked out. Later that morning I called and told him that I wanted them both out of the house so I could move my stuff out which I did. I never spoke to him again. Or her.

Literally I never spoke to them again.

So this weekend, exactly 15 years to the week that all this went down, I stumbled upon a notice in the paper. My ex-cheating-boyfriend died “suddenly” and “tragically” last month. I don’t know how. His widow is my ex-friend who he cheated on me with. They had no children.


How I found this notice in itself is very spooky. His notice was in the next column right beside an obit of an acquaintance of my family who had died of cancer last week. What are the chances of that?

I don’t really know how to feel about all this. I can’t say that I am very upset about his death. I am more shocked. It was so freaky, after all these years, to see that photo of him. It was mind blowing to know that the two of them were married and had made a life with each other for the last 15 years. It is hard to figure out what all this means. I am sad that it happened but there is also all this confusion because the situation was so bad. I was so crushed and humiliated about his actions. It was a terrible time. I feel somewhat conflicted about it all.

A friend told my story to a friend of hers who is a clairvoyant/spiritualist type person and she said that my ex-boyfriend lead me to find his death notice for me to get closure and for him to say good-bye. I don’t feel like I have closure as this has stirred up all sorts of emotions I thought were long laid to rest.

I hope that I can figure all this out and slot everything back into place so it all makes sense to me again. Wrap my mind around it all. I hope that I can eventually say good-bye to him for good and really mean it.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Crush Your Cat's Head Friday-Guest Crushee

Today I went with my neighbour Michelle and her dog Xiola to the doggy park for an afternoon of fetch. I had a blast. Of course, I couldn't let a crushing oportunity pass me by. I know she isn't a cat but I am an equal opportunity crusher.

Here is our dear Xiola feeling the crush from the fun toy I bought for her. There was some totally tubular frisbee catching today. She rocks.

Ok. So crushing her head gave me much pleasure. Sue me.

She looks good, no?

Thursday, May 04, 2006

We Are Family

I welcomed a brand new addition into my home today. I am the proud owner of a new couch. Yes, it is a cheap couch but a new one which is something I’ve never had before. My last couch was bought for $20 in a junk shop and then inexpertly reupholstered by myself. That was 6 years ago and while the old couch was not necessarily in rough shape it wasn’t exactly a thing of beauty. In fact I was feeling slightly guilty about spending the money as I am sure I could have ‘made do’ with the old couch for a year or two longer despite the fact it had started swallowing my ass. But since I have started feeling better the last few months I am experiencing a major nesting compulsion and am craving a whole new look for my apartment. Maybe it is needing to start fresh again after a hard time. Maybe it is because I didn’t do much shopping for the last year and need to make up for that. Maybe Yoshi is whispering decorating tips to me in my sleep. I don’t know but things, they are a’ changing!

Once I had set up The New Structure of Enveloping Goodness I took a moment to have a chat with Yoshi. I snuggled up to her real close and whispered these words into her ear.

“If you claw the new couch I’ll kill you.”

“If you piss on the new couch I’ll kill you.”

“If you puke on the new couch I’ll kill you.”

She has never done any of these vile actions before but I just wanted to make myself clear.

Now I have to admit that a certain someone told me today that I am dangerously close to becoming a crazy cat lady. That all my posts revolve around Yoshi. I have no idea what he is talking about.

My Fur Child ejecting her tenatiously clingy individual hairs onto my new suede-like upholstery.

Despite my dire warnings to the cat about proper couch celebrating etiquette I tempted fate by not only eating a spicy curry dinner while sitting on the couch but also consumed vast quantities of orangey type Cheesy Poufs on it as well. The couch held its own and repelled any splatter and crumbs. Well done Couchy Poo, well done!

I think we are all going to get along just fine. Any family addition who facilitates me laying around is always welcome.

PS-if anybody ever wants to quit drinking I suggest you read this. I don’t drink at all and now NEVER will. EVER!!!!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

What Filling For My New Doughnuts

Well I went to see my very cute plastic surgeon today and he said that in about 4 months I will have my implants installed for more permanent boobies. I am looking forward to this part of the journey as the expanders I have now are slightly odd shaped and make for an interesting silhouette. By interesting I mean hard, irregular and slightly lopsided.

“So,” he said. “What kind of implants do you want?” “Well, what kind have you got?” I replied. It appears I have a choice and I would really love your input while making this decision. I am hoping that maybe somebody out there has implants or knows somebody with them and can tell me all about their experiences and the pros and cons.

Here are my choices:


-very safe

-do not feel natural-very squishy
-may cause “wrinkling”


-feel and look more natural

-nasty history of possible health issues with leaking problems

He tells me that silicone implants are made differently now with a thicker plastic shell as well as much more jelly-like silicone that doesn’t leak out like it used to. He also says that experts have not really been able to find a definitive link between silicone leakage and health problems. Apparently while they were banned for a few years in North America the rest of the world continued to use them with few problems. Of course The Internet is bubbling over with horrific tales of silicone poisoning. Who to trust?

To be honest I wasn’t even sure that silicone breast implants were used in Canada at this time but it appears they are. I just assumed I would use saline. Info I have gathered states that it is a very high likelihood that my implants will rupture in my lifetime. I am leaning towards happy saline boobies but…

In any case I can take my time choosing as well as go in for another appointment to ask more questions. I am usually prepared with a piece of paper filled with queries but I expected to have my expanders filled a little more today and nothing else. It turns out my chest is about as expanded as it is going to get and no injections were needed and the all important decision came up. So I was not prepared to ask important and well informed questions. In fact I sorta sat there like a lump. Mute.

So if you have any info you can share with me I would greatly appreciate it. If you don’t want to put personal stuff in comments you can email me at crankypantsATshawDOTca and I will keep everything sent to me confidential and not blog about it at all. I promise. Even if it is very funny. And if you are interested on reading more about implants in general you can go to the FDA website and type in ‘breast implants.’ That’s what I have been doing tonight. Looking at booby photos. Too bad I don’t have Feel-o-vision.