Tuesday, November 30, 2004
When I am in moods like this it's best that I stay away from people, and people stay away from me.

As always, blogging will resume just as soon this passes. :-)

Sunday, November 28, 2004
a story about a man and his hair
Can someone tell me why it is that Angelina Jolie's character had a Russian accent in the move "Alexander"? And why no one else had an accent (except for the guy with a Scottish accent)? Just what the hell was Oliver Stone thinking when he directed this movie?? Because I haven't seen hair this distracting on a character since Tom Cruise's hair in "Collateral". Seems silly that I picking on a movie simply for it's hair and accents? Well, it is all part of the first important part of film making.... the ability to get an audience to suspend it's disbelief. You have to get the audience to buy into the film and it's characters, and if you can't do that the movie often just doesn't work. And so this film was so unbelievably bad that I actually chuckled outloud a few times. Colin Farrell a hottie? Not in this movie... Angelina Jolie is the one looking good on the screen this time, not Colin in his blonde mullet.

Prior to that movie I had just spent 2 hours in another theatre watching the movie "Hero". It's very much in the style of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon", what with the flying martial arts too ridiculous to believe, but so cool that you just don't care. I liked it and was in awe of the agility of the actors in the fight scenes. Great film, unless you hate subtitles.

So that was my weekend, mostly. I went out Friday night with 20 of my friends for a big dinner and one of my friends crashed on my couch for the night. The next day we went and saw Hero and then Alexander and then had dinner. After chilling out for the day today I am heading up to Princess Blondie's house for Survivor night.
Hope everyone had a good weekend.... back to work tomorrow. (doh! that just reminded me.. I have to check my lottery tickets!!)

Friday, November 26, 2004
the tide is high
I took this picture of the last lonely rose of the season, outside my apartment this morning (there's a larger and better version of the pic here). And yes that is a dusting of snow you see on the ground there, but no it didn't last. It has already melted away. *sigh*

I am in a super good mood today. Could have something to do with the fact that I was in bed by 9:25pm last night and therefore got 9.5 hours of sleep! Holy wow, I was apparently tired. I must be getting old.
Or my good mood could be because SAM has posted after his surgery (and commented on here), so I know all is well. Having recently had surgery myself, I know how rough these experiences can be. I am happy you're on the road to recovery, sweetie.
Or maybe I'm in a good mood because it's a beautiful sunny day here in Toronto (unlike the rain storms of the last few days) and tonight I am going to head out to dinner with 20 of my closest friends. I am so excited. I love my friends to bits, and we're so close for such a large group. *grin*

Also, I have decided to put some focus back into my dream blog, Technicolour Dreams. Too much sleep has actually worked against me in the last few months and I have been remembering less; my dream blog got much more action when I was an insomniac! But I know if I put some focus and routine into it I can begin to recall more; I used to be very good at that so I know with practice I can be again. It helps that I have very vivid dreams. Anyway, if you want to read about a crazy dream I had in which I dreamt I was David Arquette trying foil the evil Nazis, go check out the dream blog. It's pretty funny stuff.

And that about does it for me, I think. I hope everyone has a safe and happy weekend, especially my American readers who have been stuffing their faces with turkey since yesterday, celebrating Thanksgiving (and damn you for ruining my tv night because of the holiday!! talk about an ill-timed holiday!) :-P

Shabat Shalom!

Thursday, November 25, 2004
"if man is 5, then the devil is 6. And if the devil is 6, then God is 7"
Well slap my butt and call me spanky! Do my eyes deceive me?? Am I really reading that the UN has adopted a resolution condemning suicide bombers against Israeli citizens?? Can this be that after 4 years and thousands of Israelis murdered and wounded the UN has finally recognized that this is WRONG?? Get your skates out, kids.... looks like hell is finally freezing over. Then again... condemning is hardly more than saying "Gee, I wish you'd stop doing that, it's not nice". But it's a start, and I'll take it. Now why do you suppose this only happened *after* Arafat died? Hmmmm.....

In other news a Gaza-born Canadian citizen has been convicted of plotting terrorist activities in North America (here's an article from a Canadian news site). It was only a matter of time before something like this came up, wasn't it? I have always said.... it will come to our soil again, just like 9/11. That day was the end of our innocence, and I hate to say it but I think it will only get worse with time. Now maybe people can understand why there are security cameras outside the Canadian Zionist Federation offices where I go for my Hebrew classes. We are the only office in the building with such security measures; you have to buzz to be let in and only after you have identified yourself and have been viewed through the camera. Paranoid? I think we have the right to be.

Speaking of Israel, on Sunday I caught a "travel magazine" show on tv called Discover Your World. This particular episode was all about Israel and all the wonderful things there are to see and do there. I was pleased as punch as I watched the show, happy to see Israel being portrayed so positively. I mean sure, the show was clearly taped about ...oh.... 20 years ago, judging from the clothing.... but the show stood the test of time. It showed the night life in Tel Aviv and Eilat, and showed the usual sites and history all over Israel. It was a fantastic show.

I had a dream the other night that I met a guy in Jerusalem named Mike Cartier. I wonder what that means, coz rarely do I dream of specific names, let alone remember them if I do. Hmph.

Last night I went to see The Pixies in concert, and let me just tell you... it was awesome! Don't know The Pixies? Well, they had a song called "Where is my mind?" on the Fight Club soundtrack (it was at the very end of the movie). And they had a song called "Wave of Mutilation" on the Pump Up The Volume soundtrack.
Anyway! The show was amazing, as they obliged and played all the good stuff that people are waiting to hear. The crowd was loud and enthusiastic despite being *drenched* from rain. Yes, it POURED rain last night, not snow. And parking was such that it was a loooong way to the concert hall, so everyone was soaked. A delightful feeling, really. But hey, eventually we all got dancing and singing and jumping around, and we dried off. I had a great time, glad I went.

Of course, all that rain turned to ice overnight as temperatures plummeted making the drive into work this morning an extra special event. A drive that usually takes me 20 -30 mins took an hour as there were accidents everywhere and road closures abounded. The most spectacular crash came when a guy spun out on a bridge (an overpass, where one highway crosses over another) and then went over the guardrail and crashed on the highway below!!! Check it out here; at least the guy was wearing his seatbelt unlike SOME people I know.
Meanwhile other parts outside Toronto are digging themselves out of the snow that still continues to dump on them... and I am green with envy. I'll trade rain for snow.

What else.....?
Oh!! I have a new love and it is Level 2000 with aloe. For those not in the know Lever 2000 is a soap, and once upon a time it was my favourite soap in all the land. That is, until I could no longer find the original scent, just crazy scents like "fresh rain" or some such nonsense. But all that changed when I bought the new soap last week that has aloe in it.... and let me just tell ya, it smells *wicked*!!! I am in soapy rapture every time I use it now. Go get some and see what I'm talking about. You'll love it too. As a side note.... why is Amazon.com selling soap???

Also, I am adding a few new blogs to my blogroll... heylady, Shane Duffy and Oleh Girl. I know nothing about heylady yet, but her blog seems amusing (and from India??). Shane is just getting started, so it might be nice if you go show him some support... words of encouragement are always nice. And Oleh Girl is being added because I am very interested in watching her story unfold as she plans her aliyah (move to Israel) for August 2005. Should be an interesting journey from New York to Israel.

And before I sign off I would like to say a big hi to two people who have e-mailed me recently. One is Alex, a lovely girl who has been staying in Israel for the last 7 months and studying at an ulpan (she goes home to the US in December). Thanks for your e-mail, it was great to hear from someone who has been where I am (struggling with a decision to go to Israel for a while or not).
And hi to a nice chap from Australia named Neil, who is a new reader and has been kind enough to e-mail me away from the blog to introduce himself and share a bit of his world. How nice is it to get to know people all because of a silly little blog?? Thanks to you both, it reminds me why I do this. :-) (oh and Neil... you may be interested in Rat's blog... he's down in Australia too!)

Wednesday, November 24, 2004
snow pixie
It's SNOWING!!!! Well okay, it WAS snowing..for a bit there. It was raining, and then it was frozen rain, and then it was a bunch of snow. And I was happy (we never get snow this early in the year!). And when I squealed when I saw the snow as I was leaving a mall, complete strangers shot me loathing looks. Tsk. Fools! Anyway, most of it has melted around here, though a little farther north of the city there's supposed to be a big storm tonight. I'm so jealous.... I hope some comes our way.
*fingers crossed*

Yesterday something bizarro happened. I was setting up a new computer in the office, including a new wireless router. I know nothing about routers, but because I am the only one in the office who is "computer savvy" the task falls to me to figure out. So after following the setup instructions unsuccessfully I called the tech support line found on the back of the instructions. I spent a fair amount of time on the phone with a Jamaican chap as we went through all the troubleshooting to try and resolve the problem. We joked and laughed as I often do with tech support lines and the call lasted almost 45 mins. Eventually we got the matter sorted out and I thanked him for his time. However. An hour or so later I got a call .......from the tech guy!!!! As in, the guy had my work number from when we were on the phone earlier, and he CALLED me at work to hit on me!!!! He thought I was all sweet sounding and he was turned on by my voice. I was stunned. I am still stunned, in fact. And I am even a wee bit concerned the guy is gonna track me down at work, in person. He was really quite agressive (yet friendly) on the phone, asking the usually questions (age, single). I told him he's crazy coz I could have 5 heads and 6 arms for all he knows. Eek. Stay away scary man!
wtf??????? it was just weird.

So tonight I am heading to a concert though I don't really feel like it. As much as I like snow, I have been driving around all afternoon in cruddy grey and rainy weather, and I don't much feel like going back out in it. But hey, I'm going to see The Pixies, and I'm thinkin' it'll be a good show. I guess we'll see.

Oh, and I wanna send some love out to my fellow blogger and sweet friend, SAM, who had back surgery this morning. I'm thinking of you sweetie!!! Get well soon. And thank your significant other for giving me a call to let me know you were ok. That was really nice. Hang in there!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2004
random bitties
Israel is still battling locusts as they are threatening to sweep across Israel. Israel is doing everything it can (ie: spraying bug killer) while others have decided to feast upon the creatures (it's said that they are good when fried up with a little oil). There seems to be some disagreement on the matter of whether or not they are kosher (Imshin and Sha! says they are, Allison seems to think not), though I don't think it matters much to the Thai workers who find them to be a delicacy. In any event, Israel is getting some chilly weather now, which should bring this all to an end soon enough.

In other news, Arafat's nephew has admitted that the medical report after Arafat's death indicates there was NO poison found, though he still believes there is a chance he was (because those damn Jews were out to kill Arafat, afterall). I enjoy how Palestinians can ignore medical reports and throw all rationale out the window in order to blame Israel. He also said that even if he *wasn't* poisoned, Israel was still at fault for confining Arafat to his headquarters for the last few years. Yeah, I'm sure he had a rough life sitting on a cushion made of billions of dollars he stole from his people. Quit blaming Israel, already! The guy was old. He's dead. Let's move on.

I did not win the lottery on Friday. I am again disappointed in the lottery system here in Toronto. I will attempt to keep the faith by buying more tickets this week. It's only a matter of time, right? :-/

On Saturday, as I drove along the highway on my way to meet HebrewLion at the airport, I saw a most disturbing site. As I passed a pickup truck I noticed he had a giant deer (dead, I might add) tied down to the back of his truck. This upset me. It's horrible to see such a magnificent creature reduced to that. To being strapped on a truck in the pouring rain. Made me sad. Poor deer.

Let's talk about music. Let's talk about extremely overplayed music. Music that makes me homicidal after hearing it 10 times a day while I am at work. Firstly, there's Maroon 5, which I have in fact bitched about before. Well lucky me, they have a new single and it's getting plenty of airplay. I hate you, Mr. DJ!!! Same goes for Kelly Clarkson and her fucking song about spreading her wings and learning how to fly. I curse you, Kelly Clarkson, and American Idol too, for spawning you. And to you, Mr. DJ, I hope that song haunts you at night when you try to sleep. It's richly deserved. And finally, there is the new Duran Duran song. I might have liked it had I not heard it every other hour for the last 2 weeks. Now I may never know if I was ever going to like it, because to hear it now makes me want jam icepicks in my eardrums.
Music. It is the love of my life, and the bane of my life.

I have been obsessing over a toy for the last few months. It is a doll...an IDF soldier... and it is mighty hard to find. Last weekend when I was at the toy show with my friends I asked every idiot there who sold such soldiers if they had one, but alas they did not. Most websites I go on are the same: sold out. Why didn't I buy this soldier 2 years ago when they were more plentiful? I have no idea. But now I want it, perhaps because I can't have it. *sigh* But it's so cool!!

And just how the hell did Israel get snow before me??? I'm in CANADA. *pout*
Snow and lottery winnings, please.

Monday, November 22, 2004
to one of my dearest friends....


Go wish him a happy birthday over on his blog, folks! Coz it's a BIG one!

Sunday, November 21, 2004
when bloggers meet
I'm pretty sure my mom taught me not to talk to strangers, let alone meet them in an airport, pick them up and go out to lunch with them. Yet there I was walking through the Toronto airport yesterday looking for two complete strangers, passing through my town on their way back to Israel. And sure enough I managed to locate HebrewLion and his wife and off we went to spend a few hours together before they caught their next flight.

We had a wonderful time and talked about everything from Israel to American/Canadian relations and politics (they are Americans living in Jerusalem for two years of study). There was never a lull in conversation, and indeed we had many laughs together. *sigh* I was a grinning fool by the time I dropped them off at the airport again. I just love meeting other bloggers, and I was so sad that they were unable to attend the blogger bash in Israel in September. I was afraid I would never get a chance to meet them. Happily, in the end, I was able to. The internet is a marvellous thing.

So that was the highlight of my weekend, and I took today as my day to just chill out. I cleaned my whole apartment, did a little grocery shopping and spent some time with my parents. And I went to the gym yesterday and worked out so I am feeling a bit sore today. However, I must admit... I am feeling pretty good since I started working out. Who knew exercise was so good for you?? :-P
All is well, and I am feeling content today. Hope everyone had a good weekend.

Friday, November 19, 2004
And I thought *I* had problems!
See that picture on the right? What you see there is an Israeli soldier helping a Palestinian out of a collapsed tunnel that he was buried in. A tunnel that he was digging to smuggle guns and such from Egypt into the Gaza Strip. To attack and kill Israelis with. Did the IDF leave those Palestinians buried alive to die? No. They didn't. They helped get them out.
For other pictures that show a side of the Israeli Defense Forces that no one ever sees please check out this post over at Boker Tov, Boulder. There you will see soldiers who are only human... holding a young child, praying together and petting a stray kitten. Very sweet and moving pictures, go have a look.

But Israel has other problems to deal with at the moment...like locusts. Seems Egypt is battling a huge swarm of locusts (check out Boker Tov, Boulder again for this incredible picture!!!!) and now they are making their way into southern Israel. This is bad news for anyone growing anything that might be appealing to these creatures, but good news for those who like to fry up locusts with a little oil and seasonings. Mm-mm!

As for me... well, I think I've stopping going crazy. Then again, I thought that before, so I'm afraid to say it this time. After resisting the urge to call up my buddy SAM and have a freakout on the phone, I decided instead to go to the gym and work out after work. I hadn't been in a few days, and can I just tell you... I felt *amazing* afterwards!!! This gym thing is the best idea ever, and apparently my body was craving it... it just had a pissy way of showing it.

So I am back on track and ready for the weekend. Tonight I'm heading over to Princess Blondie's house for our usual Friday night of watching our (taped) episode of Survivor. And tomorrow I am meeting HebrewLion and his wife at the airport for a few hours while they wait for their connecting flight on their way back home to Israel.Yay!!! I can't wait to finally meet them! :-D

Shabat Shalom!

Thursday, November 18, 2004
I was SO wrong..
Yeah, I thought I had gathered them all up, but as it turns out my marbles are still rolling all over the place. My mind is a messy place right now, and so I think it's best I don't post much until this passes/is dealt with.
I appreciate everyone's support, I'm sure I'll be fine. I'm just a bit confused right now and seem to be going through something that I can't quite put my finger on. I'll post again when I'm feeling like my brain hasn't been scrambled like an egg.
Oh, and I didn't win the lottery last night. Too bad, I dare say it might have improved my mood immensely.

Meantime, want to read something funny? Go to Bruno Bornsztein's blog. He's *hilarious*. Or try Amy's Robot. Another really funny blog. Oh and Rebecky! Also brilliant, well worth reading. Go on, you know you want to try them.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004
coming back down to earth
Whew. Crisis averted.
I have no idea what enters my brain, but every so often I get kinda nutty. My nuttiness grew throughout the day yesterday until I was downright screwy by the time I left work. I won't get into details as to where this kind of thinking leads my daft little brain, lest you decide I am ready for a rubber room (which I was beginning to think by the end of the night that I was), but let's just say a good night's rest has mercifully put things back in perspective. The only thing I did to indulge my obsessiveness was to buy a book on my way home from work, and it wasn't even for me... I got it for Princess Blondie. See? Retail therapy doesn't even have to be for you, it can be a present for someone else! (and then I wonder why I'm in such debt?? duhhhh....)

That being said, I am trying to cool my jets when it comes to this recent debate over whether I should go to Israel for a few months or not. Clearly I am not in the right frame of mind to be considering such drastic life-altering choices. lol. 'Nuff said!

Anyway, before I go, I have added a couple of new blogs to my blogroll... go check them out. At Level Ground is a wonderful blog out of Jerusalem with lots of excellent photos. And Who's Your Rabbi? has an interesting take on things.. Go show them some love, folks!

Tuesday, November 16, 2004
critical mass
Well, I think I am officially going crazy. For a brief moment earlier today SAM had successfully grounded me but a few insightful revelations since have had me bouncing off the walls.

I need to spend a little time meditating and figuring stuff out.
I'll be back when I have....calmed.

"The world's on fire and
It's more than I can handle
I'll tap into the water
(I try to pull my ship)
I try to bring more
More than I can handle
(Bring it to the table)
Bring what I am able"
-Sarah McLachlan

Monday, November 15, 2004
can't... shut... my brain..... off!!
Ok, before I go on a rant, let me recap my weekend. I'll be brief so as to not bore you all too much. :-P
Friday was great, I went up to Princess Blondie's as I do every Friday now, to watch Survivor (that I taped the night before). We ordered pizza, watched the show, watched a hilarious movie, all was good and fun as always. On the way home I drove through a bizarre snow storm that only went on for about 10 minutes and then stopped and disappeared without a trace of snow to be seen anywhere. Very odd, and torturous...why can't the snow stay on the ground? why melt?? *pout*

Saturday I was up and at the gym for 9am (I've been going almost daily, it's been great!) and then off for a bit of shopping with my mom. Came home, tidied my home a bit, and then met with friends to go see a couple of movies. We saw The Incredibles and I Heart Huckabees. The Incredibles was good, though I think much of it would go over the heads of kids and maybe even bore the really young ones (how many kids can grasp the concept of a relocation program??). And I Heart Huckabees was strange little film. Very different from most, but if you liked Being John Malkovich you might like this. After the movies one of my friends came and crashed at my place for the night.

Sunday it was off with the Geek Brigade (my affectionate name for my gang of friends when we do geeky activities) to the big toy show to see what goodies we could find. The highlight of the day was finding a crazy car in the parking lot.... you'll just have to go to my photoblog to see it (for the sake of archiving, the pics are here, here and here). In the end I got an old Superman movie poster (with George Reeves, not Christopher Reeve) for my friend for Christmas and a little something for a certain Israeli.

Ok...so what am I on the verge of ranting about after such a fun filled weekend? Basically what I ranted about before. I can't get off this idea of going to Israel, either for a short stay (maybe five months to learn Hebrew) or maybe longer.... What is going on in my brain?? I am actually getting really stressed out today as I *constantly* weigh the pros and cons of the situation. I am going out of my mind as this debate goes in circles in my head. One minute I talk myself into it, the next I talk myself out of it. In the end I keep asking myself the most basic and important question of all..... WHY do I want to do this? What is my real motivation? Am I wanting to do this for the right reasons? And what would those reasons be, exactly??

The reason this debate has been fired up again in my head is because I have had a small offer of assistance from someone. This was someone I got somewhat close to on my first trip to Israel last year but have not seen since. The offer is a place to stay (for a few months) while I study (Hebrew), along with some help getting a job at a scuba diving place in Eilat (oh god..I drool at the thought). This friend just so happens to be a diving instructor and is at the diving centre every weekend. This sounds easier than it is though... first of all, I still don't speak Hebrew. And I still don't have any real certification for diving. I'd have to learn Hebrew and I would have to really get a move on in terms of learning to dive. These things will take me at least a year or two (assuming I do little else) to do. Remember, I'd have to relearn all the diving terms in Hebrew too if I am to take tourists diving or some such thing. This starts to come back to a money issue... learning to dive costs money, and lots of it. And unless I actually, offically, move to Israel I will have to pay for those Hebrew classes too (when you immigrate to Israel you get all kinds of assistance, including Hebrew lessons for 5 months). We're talking *thousands* of dollars. Oh, and if you are going to work in Israel you need a work permit if you don't live there. Those are nearly impossible to get (rules state that you can only get the job if no one else in Israel can do it...). So this all comes back to.... moving to Israel permanently. Something I'm not prepared to do quite yet. Maybe I never will be.

*sigh* Ok, I really am ranting.. maybe I'll cut it off there for now. No need to get so heavy on a Monday morning. I think I need to take this idea one step at a time. For now..I should probably revisit the idea of diving. I have shied away from it since my friend and classmate (Aviva) was killed while diving in August, but it's something I would like to be able to move past. I really enjoyed diving, and I don't want fear to keep me from something I enjoyed. Aviva wouldn't have wanted that either. So maybe I'll go back to my old diving shop and start seeing what I can afford in terms of classes. It's a start...and maybe it will give me something to focus on. And maybe I'll start writing all the bloggers I know that moved to Israel from another country and get some honest answers about what it's like.

Or maybe I'll just wait until this feeling passes and remember that I have a truly wonderful and blessed life here in Canada... one that I love very much. :-)

Friday, November 12, 2004
I Smell Winter
Well it is a *beautiful* day in my neighbourhood, and it's FRIDAY...so I am in good spirits today. The weather is cooling down which means autumn, though not "officially" over...is long gone. I'm a bit sad that I missed most of it coz I was stuck at home recovering from surgery. I missed the leaves changing colour which is one of my very favourite things about living in Canada. Just LOOK at this picture (click for the big beautiful larger version) of the trees changing colours in a Toronto park and tell me that it isn't one of the most beautiful sites ever! But now the leaves have blown off and the trees are bare and waiting for snow (we don't get a lot of it here in Toronto, and it usually doesn't snow much until mid-January).

There is something so amazing about the seasons changing, and I have grown very nostalgic about it in the last year or two. I think it's because I have considered living in Israel, a place where I will no longer be able to experience these things. The crisp scent in the air... the smell of wood burning in fireplaces at night.... the sight of my breath hanging in the air... and eventually the crunch of snow under my feet (I know, I know...Jerusalem occasionally gets snow, but it's SO not the same). If I moved to Israel I would miss these things so very much. I am a Canadian, through and through, and because of my time in Israel I have come to love winter that much more. I love the snow and look forward to big storms. I love the chaos of it all, and I love it when the city comes to a standstill because we are snowed in. No one goes to work, no ones goes to school.... but most go out and play. And then you come in to get warm and curl up on the couch with a blanket, hot chocolate and a movie. *sigh*

That's not to say I love everything about winter. I don't mind the cold, but wind really pisses me off. And the fact that the days are very short.... and often grey... I can get the winter blahs. Getting up and going to work while it is still dark out and then driving home again in the dark because the sun goes down so early, can really mess with your head. It can put me into a hibernation mode where all I wanna do is go home and crawl back into bed. I battle this problem by turning a lot of lights on when I am at home; not the most economical solution, but it helps give the illusion of daylight and really helps. And I make sure I go out plenty with my friends and enjoy all the joys and misery of winter together. :-)

See? It's possible to like winter. It's even possible to love winter. I can't wait for snow!!!!
Shabat Shalom.

Chaos in Ramallah!!! Oh lord, leave it to the Palestinians to make a mess of the funeral/burial of their "beloved leader", Arafat. Right now on my local Toronto news channel I am seeing live footage of the huge crowd of mourners as they swarm the helicopters carrying the dignitaries and Arafat's body. So out of control is the crowd that they cannot even drop the doors open on the copters to get the people and coffin out!

I am simply amazed that my little local news channel is running the footage for this long, actually foregoing any commercials and other news in order to show this. I'm impressed! This is the channel Toronto goes to for traffic and weather reports in the morning! I have flipped over to CNN and they are doing the same, showing the footage of the crowd. Shots are being fired in the air.....

Here comes the coffin! And the crowd goes wild!!! lol

Anyway, for various bios on Arafat, check out Meryl's compilation of links, though I suggest starting with this one. I don't care to spend too much time talking about Arafat... he doesn't deserve it.

oh wait... I just noticed a Canadian flag being waved in the crowd of people, among the Palestinian flags.

Thursday, November 11, 2004
Today I will stand with others around the world to remember and honour those who lost their lives so that I could live a free life in this big beautiful country. Today is a day to remember wars of the past, and wars of the present. The fight for freedom never stops. Let us be grateful for those who have made it all possible, including my great grandfather.

At 11/11/11 (month, day, hour) I will stand in a moment of silence as will most in my city. I will listen to the trumpet play a most solemn tune. And, as I have since I was a child, I will have tears in my eyes as I am filled the enormity of the moment.

For more on Canada's role in the World Wars, Korean war, South African war, and others.. try these sites: Remember and Remembrance. More Canadian war posters can be seen here.

Lest We Forget.

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe,
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch, be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields

the end and the beginning
Yes, yes, I know he's dead.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004
my life through a lens (part two)
No time for a "real" post, it's my dad's birthday today. Happy Birthday, Daddy!!!

I put up some more reader requested pictures on my photoblog. If you didn't specifically request a pic you can just click on that link and go right to my photoblog and see all the pics.

  • Dave: my favourite spot to sit in my house, here and here.

  • SAM: my fridge and it's contents, here, here, here and here. My favourite shoes here. And pictures taken "(from your car) of cool sites you see but don't really notice anymore on your way to work or home" can be found here, here, here, here and here.

  • Tzaddi: your candy pic will come this weekend.

And that's it? No more suggestions??? Ya bunch of wimps!! I know I have a ton more readers than that, so why is no one speaking up?? like si, for instance! Where the hell are YOU hiding, missy??
Come on folks, you can do better than this.

he's dead, he's not dead.... he's dead, he's not dead...
This whole Arafat thing is getting stranger by the minute. He's apparently not quite dead yet (or is he?) but his funeral is scheduled for Thursday at the Cairo airport, and then he will be moved to Ramallah (West Bank) for burial on Friday. Boy, for someone who isn't dead yet, they sure seem precise on when he will be buried.
The announcement of his death is expected any minute now........but the big question is, who will assume power?

Tuesday, November 09, 2004
my life through a lens (part one)
I don't have time to write a real post until tonight. Meanwhile, let me offer you some pictures, as requested in the post from yesterday; if you prefer, you can just skip right to my photoblog to see it all, or if you are looking for something in particular :

Tzaddi, here is a picture of one of my favourite places to hang out (with bonus pictures here and here). And here are pictures of my three tattoos here, here, and here. I still owe you a pic of my favourite candy. I have not forgotten but I (a) have to decide on my favourite, which is tough, and (b) need to go take a pic of it once I have settled on which is my favourite. I'll let you know when those pics are up.

Dave B, here are pics of my front door here and here, with a picture of the view from my living room window. I completely forgot to take a picture of my favourite spot to sit in my home. I'll post it soon, and let you know.

And for Rat..... a picture of my mouse pad. Enjoy!

And SAM, I didn't get yours until this morning...so your suggestions will be in the next batch. You're a man after my own heart, with the suggestion of the contents of my fridge! I love seeing what people keep in their fridges. ;-)

Keep them coming folks, this has been most amusing. And deep down inside, I know you're all voyeurs. :-P

Monday, November 08, 2004
Monday Monday
Me in my office at workI thought I would start the week off with a peek into my daily life, for those who might be curious. This picture shows me in my office (I took it this morning). In the background (here's a larger picture for better detail) you see such exciting things as a picture of my grandma (whom I adore), a flag of Israel, a desk calendar ("A Little Joy, A Little Oy", given to me by Princess Blondie last Chanukkah), a cup of Tim Horton's coffee (doesn't come much more Canadian than that), SAM's blog on my computer in the background, and on top of my monitor...a few toys (Hellboy, The Changeling, Spider-Man, and my honey, basketball player Karl Malone). Terribly exciting isn't it? ;-)

This kicks off something I'm gonna try for those that are curious; I'm gonna steal Treppenwitz's recent idea of posting any pictures that have been requested of him by his audience. I like getting a peek into the world of fellow bloggers myself, since you get to know someone on a semi-personal basis by reading about their lives and experiences on their blogs. You tend to have all kinds of ideas in your head about what he or she is like and what his or her world looks like. Dave B, has posted a few pictures showing parts of his home, and it has been most interesting.

So! I'll take requests from those who are curious and want to have a glimpse into my life. Let's not be childish about this and ask for naked pictures... I want you to really think about it. What are you curious about? My computer area at home, where I do most of my writing? My ugliest article of clothing that I just can't let go of? my vast uncontrollable collection of makeup? my oldest pair of shoes? My bedroom? Kitchen? My apartment building? My car? My tattoos? The view from my office? The contents of my bag/purse? a funny face? my local movie theatre? what???
Think of something and either e-mail me or leave it in the comments. Be creative! Or at least.. be curious. ;-)

Saturday, November 06, 2004
thinking outside my bubble
Lately I've had a strange and quietly burning desire to do...... something. Something big. Maybe....make a big move to another country. Or maybe volunteer for an organization somewhere else in the world. Either way I seem to have an odd desire to put myself in a position in which I am outside my normal comfort zone. I have no idea why I feel I need to do this, other than I believe you learn a lot about yourself in such situations. I believe that if you put yourself in a scenario where you are forced to re-evaluate what's important, it will forever change your view of your priorities in life. How can it not?

Even my limited life's travels have caused me to look at my life differently and made me question what's important. These travels cause this pull in my life towards exploring the world and seeing how others live. Like the pull I feel towards Israel. Every time I come home from a trip there I am imagining what it would be like if I lived there. I look around at my life here in Canada and appreciate all that I have so much more because of my time in Israel. Everything, from the changing of the leaves in autumn to our healthcare system. There's no doubt that life here is good. Comfortable. So why is it that when I hear about a tragic event in Israel, such as a suicide bomber, I want to get on a plane right then and there and go to Israel? What happens in my brain (and heart) that I have the exact opposite reaction to most people, and I want to go to where the 'danger' and turmoil is? I can't explain it. After the latest pigua (bombing) in Tel Aviv I actually thought... 'I want to move to Israel and become a paramedic'. I was soon overwhelmed by the fact that it would take, at the very least, about 6 years to make such a thing happen (yes, I went so far as to look into it online). Not only would I need to go back to highschool to get chemistry to even *start* the paramedic's course, somewhere along the way I would have to re-learn it all again in Hebrew. Oh right, and I'd have to LEARN Hebrew first. *sigh* I'd be pretty old by the time I got through all that. The funny thing is, never in my life have I ever thought about being a paramedic; it's something I have no interest in doing here in Canada, but if I were in Israel it would be something I would consider. Strange....

But I digress.
Even as I feel this desire to do "something" I find myself wrestling with the concept. My heart and brain are in complete disagreement over the matter. My brain plays to the view presented by society that I have a nice home, nice job and nice car. If I walk away from that I may never be able to get it back. So if things didn't work out on whatever endevour, I'd have to come back to Canada with my tail between my legs and likely not a penny to my name. Oh god, I'd probably have to move back in with my parents! LOL! Pretty unappealing at 30 years old, lemme tell ya.

So my brain tries to rationalize with my heart.... it tells my heart that it would be foolish to leave the secure life I have to head out into the blackness that is uncertainty. Fears come into play easily and I quickly talk myself out of it. But then a short while later I find myself thinking about it yet again. It's almost as if it's getting more pressing... as if to say that if I don't do it now while I have no commitments (ie: a mortgage, husband, kids (not that I plan on having any, but you know what I mean), etc..) I will never do it. If I don't follow my heart now it may be too late; I may find my "soul mate" and settle down and that will be it. I will settle into the routine of marriage and house and job, and left wondering... what if?

Ok, that's a bit dramatic, but my brain works that way. I have a way of overthinking... ask anyone who's ever had the joy of being my friend or lover. It can be exhausting. lol
So what do I do about this nagging feeling.... voice.. in my heart? I have been looking over a website that shows volunteer options in Israel, but most of those require money, and that's something I just don't have. And even if I could find funding... would I be brave enough to do it? Tell my boss that I'm leaving for 5 months? A year? Maybe forever? I just don't know. I don't know if I could overcome my fears. Because while some would accuse me of just being too comfortable in my Canadian lifestyle where I have everything at my fingertips... the fact of the matter is, I *do* love it here. I grew up here. I love everything about it; the seasons, the attitudes, the people, the environment, not to mention my family and friends. For the first time in my life I am actually happy with my life. Am I willing to give this all up for some little voice telling me I need to do something radical?? Why do I feel this need to take it all and shake it up when I am finally happy??

Perhaps I should try something small. Volunteer locally? I'm not sure that would quench the thirst. I seem to feel the need to be elsewhere. But wouldn't it be wise to try volunteering around here first?


Any rich philanthropists reading this feel like sending me to an Israeli Ulpan to learn Hebrew for five months? Coz that's what I'd really like to do. I wanna be submerged in it to learn it. Away from my normal routine and distractions. Away from everything I know; my family, my friends... my life. It would be part of that "character building" scenario I seem to be craving, and it would also give me the chance to learn Hebrew as I have wanted to for so long. So if some rich and generous soul is reading this and feels like contributing to my strange life's mission to learn Hebrew, you can find my e-mail address in the right hand column there. Feel free to contact me. lol

Hm. All this reminds me.... I forgot to buy a lottery ticket last night. Damn! 17 million dollars! Maybe I should go out and get one for tonight's draw..

Friday, November 05, 2004
happy happy!
Me in my fancy new sweater my mom brought back for me from ParisI'm in a good mood today (though it doesn't seem to show in that pic of me..hm). There are a number of reasons, but the main one stems from an e-mail I got this morning from a certain Hebrew Lion over in Jerusalem. This is a blogger whom I adore but did not have the opportunity to meet at the Israeli Blogger Bash back in September (he and his wife were out of the country). I was very sad he wasn't there, but this morning I got an exciting e-mail... he will be passing through Toronto on his way down to Boston, and has a 7 hour layover here! The last time I heard he came through Toronto on his way somewhere else (California?) I told him that next time he was passing through he should let me know and we could hook up for dinner. And so he did! Yay!!! I can't wait to meet him and his lovely wife. So November 20th I'm gonna scoop them up from the airport and have dinner with them for a few hours and talk the day away. Eeeek! I'm so excited. Meeting other bloggers is such an awesome experience!

What else? Well... I don't need to dwell on Arafat do I? Tick tock, tick tock.... he's time is nigh. Hurry up. The peace process has been waiting for this day. *fingers crossed*

Last night I signed up to a new gym with my mom (and she forked out the money for it! bonus!). I have never been much of a gym girl for a few reasons: (1) unless it is *right* in my backyard, it can never be close (and therefore convenient) enough. I'm lazy, I'll admit it. (2) I am poorer than dirt. Unless it's free, I can't afford it. (3) Motivation. I need someone else to kick me in the ass and join me in the gym to ensure I am kept accountable. (4) Time. The idea of spending an hour or two in the gym is *highly* unappealing. (5) Hate me if you must, but I am a skinny litle runt who has never had to worry about her weight. In fact, I have to struggle to keep weight on, especially when I get sick (with my recent illness and surgery I lost over 5 lbs/ 2.3 kg, which is a lot for me and not healthy!). I know most women think this is an ideal way to be, but it has it's health concerns too, so don't be so quick to judge me and call me a skinny bitch. And you have NO idea how bad I feel the cold in the winter!! Anyway, being petite has meant I have never felt greatly compelled to workout to achieve a particular weight.

So lucky for me, the moons seem to all have aligned and the bases are covered! The gym, though not in my backyard, is SO close it might as well be. I can walk to it! That eliminates my biggest excuse. My mom has signed up with me which takes care of the money thing and the motivation thing. She needed a gym partner too, and felt the price of my membership was worth it. It works out well for both of us. And the best part... the workout is 30 mins. Some of you may have heard of this system..it's a new setup in many women's gyms in which there is a circut of equipment that you rotate through. You do a high energy workout in which you get a minute or so on each piece of equipment (and you work your ASS off in that time, I might add) and then move onto the next. You do NOT stop moving the entire 30 mins, which is very good for keeping the heart rate up. Anyway, a lot of people think it's a lame system, but I actually really enjoyed it. And if I like it that means I'll do it, and already that's more exercise than I'm presently getting (which is ZERO, I am embarrassed to report). So yay for me finally finding an exercise program I am comfortable with!

And tonight I am heading up to Princess Blondie's house to curl up and watch Survivor with her. Always good to see her, she's good for my soul, that girl is. :-D

All this and the new trailer for the upcoming Star Wars movie has been released today.
It's looks pretty damn cool, check it out here.
*sigh* Life is good.

Shabat Shalom.

Thursday, November 04, 2004
Smoothed over
Folks... I am pleased to report that Smooth Stone and I have patched up our rift. If you don't know what I am talking about it will have to remain that way, for Smooth and I have both removed the posts that contained our harsh and unkind words. A battle over politics is not a pleasant thing, especially between friends. Luckily Smooth was a big enough man to step up and make things right... he is the one who once again demonstrates to me why I admire him so much. Thank you for helping to make things right, Smooth.
Let this be a new beginning!

And it looks like it's starting off right! I know I got excited about this before, but this time it really *does* look like Arafat is gonna kick the bucket. He is in a coma and it looks like his organs are shutting down. I know I shouldn't be cheering someone's impending death and all... but it's hard not to when you think how many lives might be spared by his death. Let us hope his death brings a new era in the Middle East.... one of hope.

The Jerusalem Post is reporting that Arafat is dead. Others are splitting hairs and saying he is brain dead. Let me help you out... that's pretty much dead. He's a vegetable. If he is on life support and his brain has shut down it's safe to say it's over. Let's move onto building a future.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004
one, two, three ballots! ah ah AH!
Would you believe I actually got a horrible night's sleep because of this damn election??? I had no idea it was weighing so heavily on my mind, but there I was tossing and turning all night long! Finally I got up half an hour before my alarm to check the news..... with no real conclusive result. Sure sure, Bush probably won, but can I ask what the hell is so wrong with the American voting system that you guys can't ever get the counts done right?? Here in Canada we do it the old fashioned way....a piece of paper, a pencil, a booth and a cardboard ballot box. Seems simple and old fashioned, but hell if it doesn't work!

*sigh* I can't even comment on all this.. I'm just too depressed by American politics and the messed up system it has for voting. It could be 11 days before votes tallies are finalized, and even then, who knows if it's accurate? May I remind you all that Bush wasn't actually elected the last time?
Strap in for another 4 years, kids..... it's gonna be a long 4 years.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004
Day of Reckoning
"Yet our best trained, best educated, best equipped, best prepared troops refuse to fight.
Matter of fact, it's safe to say they would rather switch.....than fight"
- Martin Luther King Jr

Well, this is it. The big election day in the United States. And it's safe to say this is THE election that the whole world will be watching. I can't remember an American election that has had the entire world holding it's breath quite like this one. I was mildly interested in the last election, but this time I will be among those holding my breath as the results come in. This election could change *everything*.

I have not bothered to offer my opinion on Bush or Kerry because I am just not in the mood to deal with rabid supporters going off on rants that end in mud slinging and disrespect. Calling someone a moron for voting for a particular candidate is not exactly an intelligent response, nor is it going to sway somebody to suddenly vote the other way. In fact, there are some blogs I have almost stopped visiting altogether because I cannot stomach the name smearing of the candidate they oppose. This election has reduced otherwise intelligent individuals into school bullies who think they know it all, and shit upon anyone who's views and opinions differ from their own. And I have to say, it's the pro-Bush blogs that have repelled me the most. Sorry, I know most of my Israeli bloggers seem to support Bush, but how you go about selling the rest of us on Bush is just....well... childish, a lot of the time. Sometimes even disgusting or repelling. As I said, I have had to stop reading some of my favourite blogs because they are just *way* over the top with the Bush support and I choke on it whenever I go there. Support Bush, fine, but to use the old "Kerry is a liar" as your main argument is not only tiring as all hell, it's a joke considering the amount of lies and deception that have been going on for the last 4 years.
I have yet to see any pro-Kerry blogs, but then again...I haven't cared enough to look.

What are Canadians thinking? Well, most favour Kerry, that's no surprise (except for Crawler, who loves Bush and thinks we should have gone to look for the weapo...well...to go start a war). Most see Bush as a crazy gun-toting Texan who likes to start wars under false (or misinformed) pretenses. However, Kerry won't be so good for Canada, overall. He has some policy plans that will put a clamp on some of the trading and such, between Canada and the US. I guess we'll see...

And of course, all the Jews are wondering...which president is better for Israel? This becomes a tough call for Jews living in the States... do you vote for the guy you think is best for the US or for Israel? Because the answer may not be the same. I have to admit, I think Bush would be better for Israel.
So which one? WHICH ONE??? Thank god I'm not American.. I leave the choice to you guys. Good Luck... coz quite frankly, I don't like either option.

Bush and Kerry showing their support for Israel. photo taken from: http://www.nationalvanguard.org/Tonight I am heading back to my Hebrew class for the first time in over a month. I'm not looking forward to it, as I have not been practicing it for a long time and I'm very far behind. But after that I will be watching the Daily Show (with John Stewart) coverage of the election at 10pm (est). I can't wait, I have really come to love that show over the last month. I love John Stewart. I think I'll marry him. (a nice Jewish boy!)

And now.....we can only wait and see......

Monday, November 01, 2004
here's comes my rage again...
After a perfectly wonderful weekend, my week now starts with news of yet another suicide bomber in Israel. And I am especially enraged to hear it took place in my favourite market, Shuk HaCarmel, in Tel Aviv.

I have nothing more to say on the matter.
Boker tov, Boulder! has a good post on it, including pictures if you can stomach the horror.