Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Don't know where to start

My ego is bruised. Might as well start there, eh?

Forget it. I can't even continue with this thread of thought now. I'm going to go cuddle with the cat that I am taking care of for a tall friend.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Evening sun, early fall

I'm currently sitting in the Gladstone hotel bar; not the one where pop star hopefuls sing karaoke on Saturday nights, but the nicer one that gets the early evening sun at 6:10 on September 22nd. I love the evening sun when the shadows are long and the light is golden.

I've got a glass of Lailey chardonnay and I'm waiting for my husband of exactly one year to join me. We were, in fact, married at the Gladstone and this moment is characterized by that feeling of time having gone by so fast and that feeling of distance - of how far you have come in that same space of time. How can those two opposing feelings ever exist at the same time? I love that feeling because it keeps me guessing.

I suppose we are somewhat nostalgic to come here for a drink on our anniversary, but I find that revisiting the same place time and again helps to show you just how far you have come. It is a way to know yourself better.

I'm about to embark on another journey that will take me back to a place that I was over five years ago: I'm going to go to Italy with my husband next month and let me tell you, I already know I've come a long way, baby. Despite the differences between the me of then, and the me of now, it just occurred to me that the trip might highlight the me that remains the same. The essential me. I'm very excited that I can share all of this with the man that I'm on this journey with. The one who has just walk through the door...

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Knitting knerd

I'm on ravelry as merlottricot. I am now ramping up the knitting after a few months of only adding a few mm to some silk i-cord after having lost a project bag while in NYC. It is a slippery slope...like I should not be blogging at this moment in time...

Merlot.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

GPS vs. brain + map

I'm sitting in suburbia, in a new subdivision that is only about 50% populated in Brooklyn, Ontario. I'm on set. Our cameraman was half an hour late because he plugged in the information in the GPS, which told him to go to Stoney Creek because this subdivision is so new that the GPS doesn't recognize the address. When he pulled up he was saying that his GPS took him to the wrong place. I responded with: "You should have looked at the map that Sara sent you." The map and driving directions were correct. I know; that is how I got to set.

I had thought that perhaps our director would get lost, because he notoriously relies on his GPS. But he made it to set first! He tried plugging in the address the night before and when that didn't work he resorted to a map. Probably the most amusing thing this morning was said director on the phone giving directions to our cameraman. It was a bit twilight zone.

In conclusion, while the GPS can be a wonderful thing, brain + map wins hands down!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Catering to a med student/interior designer

This past Saturday my husband and I helped a Humble Chef out with a private catered party for a med student who has started her own interior design company. I think it was a house warming/fundraising event. The point is I'm not clear; it was all too slash this, slash that.

First of all we arrive at her building (promptly at 1pm) at a fairly swanky addy near Bloor and Church. We lug in the food and catering supplies, first to the ground floor lobby, then to the sky lobby. Take a moment and reflect on how retarded having a lobby AND a "sky lobby" is. Is it just me?

We get to the sky lobby and let the concierge know that we are here for the event in suite 2***. Clearly we knew what the function of a concierge is and the resident did not: she neither left her key, nor left a message with the concierge. Instead she said that she would leave the door unlocked. After many failed attempts to reach her on her cell we finally got her on her mother's cell (we got that # from her ex-boyfriend - a Humble Chef's cousin - now you begin to understand, I think) and the concierge let us proceed!

We entered her empty apartment. And I mean empty! There was no furniture; just random wall sconces and house plants. Oh, and a cow hide rug jauntily askew in the middle of the living room. No matter, we got to work straight away. Sorting ingredients, washing veg, setting up work stations. At the point when the balsamic reduction was about half done our hostess walked in the door. She was with A Humble Chef's aunt, her mother and her cousin. There may have been another aunt there too (hers). I'm not sure what they did except move the wall sconces and candle holders around, but the next thing I knew they were gone.

We were then left to our own devices and our deadline: the party was to start at 7pm. By 6:30, the time that A Humble Chef said that the food would be ready, the food was ready. We took a little break, a couple of us had a cigarette, and we had time to notice that the apartment did not have any lights. This is not to mention that there was no table from which to serve food. We started to wonder; is this for real? By 7pm there was still no host; we wondered even further. Then my husband went to get us some drinks.

By 7:30ish we had drinks and had heard from our hostess: she was running late. No kidding. She finally arrived at about 7:45 - thankfully ahead of her guests. We rushed around lighting tea lights and even installing the wall sconces. The three of us food types went to scout out a table in the lobby or something. The new concierge lent us a folding table that is reserved for just such an occasion. It was all set just in time for the first guests...almost. The booze hadn't arrived yet: our hostess' mother was still to bring it when she arrived.

There we were, the hired help, sipping our imported beer while the first guests arrived and had to wait around for the party booze. A bit gauche, I admit, but I remind you that only minutes before we were in serious doubt that there really was going to be a party.

In the end, people were loving the food, I was slinging the booze, and the mood was very friendly. By the time the cake came out we had a slice and then split.

That was my evening of catering to a med student/interior designer.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Optimism regained! Is it Spring or the antidepressants?

I have definitely noticed a shift in my outlook lately. I'm not sure if it is the sunshine or the celexa, or some combination, but I don't care. My mind does not automatically spiral to the negative. My job has become bearable, dare I say enjoyable? The things that sent me into a violent fit of tears and rage I can now laugh at. The fact that I work on a reality TV show that is totally incongruous to my values just seems kind of funny and absurd these days. Funny in a self deprecating, I don't take myself too seriously, sort of way.

I also noticed that my inherent laziness is not taking over completely as it had over the past few months. Perhaps because I am not disinterested in living anymore? I'm getting chores done, shopping for groceries, doing my job at work and am enjoying it.

I never lost interest in food, in the intellectual sense, but when I was down and out I just wasn't getting into the whole sensual aspect of creating food for myself and the ones that I love. No more! Last night I cooked a pretty good meal which I had planned - this is unusual for me because I'm usually opening the cupboard and winging it. I still did make some winging it substitutions because I wanted to use what was already in the fridge.

My friend from University visited with her boyfriend. They are both vegetarian and so I decided to serve fish. This week the first magazine of my subscription to Gourmet Magazine arrived in the mail (April '08). It was a delightful surprise as I had forgotten that I signed up for a subscription. I chose two recipes for Black Cod with Olives and Potatoes in Parchment served with Sauteed Dandelion Greens as well as a Baked Ricotta from "Sunday Suppers at Lucques" by Suzanne Goin. I only had to buy the fish and potatoes as I had everything else on hand when you take the substitutions into consideration.

The parchment packages made for a particularly enjoyable presentation. A lot of flare for not a lot of work! Also, everything was moist and delicious. I totally should have taken a photo but I wasn't thinking about the blog at the time. Oh well, I guess I will learn.

Monday, March 17, 2008

The mountain of hand washing

I hate the mountain of hand washing that had accumulated over the last few months. I mean, about a third of my wardrobe has been out of commission for over half of the year. Well folks...I took matters into my own hands...but not exactly. I actually took it out of my hands...

I ordered some items from this website call laundry alternatives. A "Wonder Wash" which is basically a glorified cannister with a hand crank. It looks a bit like R2 d2. The jury is still out on whether this is labour saving our more labour intensive. But your hands don't get as pruny.

The second item that I ordered was a laundry spinner. Imagine a salad spinner about 5 times the size of a regular salad spinner, but now add a fairly impressive motor. Brilliant! The worst thing about hand washing was wringing the stuff out anyway...then the dripping...and the days it took to dry. And yes, I do know about the trick of rolling the wet clothing in a towel and squeezing out the moisture. Actually, I usually stepped on it as I found that to be pretty effective, but not so anymore! Now I can spin the heaviest knitwear and it is dry the next day!!!

I can't believe I am about to hit "publish post".

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Spadina Street Cars

I remain perplexed by the two different approaches to boarding the Spadina streetcar that TTC passengers seem to silently and unanimously agree upon. There are distinct rules; if you are entering at the front of the vehicle the same rules do not apply at the rear.

At the front of the streetcar it is all about chaos. People just cluster around the entrance and hope for the best. If you are waiting to get on here you can expect to be pushed, jostled and even shoved. Usually it is a little old 4'10'' woman who is doing the shoving. It takes up to 4 streetcars to get on, if you don't enjoy shoving your way on.

In stark contrast to this is the method of entering the streetcar at the rear. It is all orderliness and precision (almost - see next paragraph). Usually two lines form, single file thank you very much, and curve to accommodate the seemingly endless line of the people. Seriously, the lineup can go as far as the exit on the farthest end of Spadina station. And this lineup, though it does appear daunting, is much more efficient a way of getting on the streetcar. I know because I used to be one of the jokers at the front entrance. Now I know that within two streetcars, not four, I will be comfortably seated at the back and either reading or knitting.

The one exception is that sometimes people with lack of foresight line up for the rear entrance of the streetcar and do not curve the line where they should. Instead, they just keep lining up until they hit the wall where the stairs to the subway platform are. This means that they block the entrance to/exit from the subway platform. This really annoys me because I think "where do you think this line can go from here?". Anyway, perhaps I should post some photos to support my irritation at this.

Some mornings I would like to be like the kindergarten teacher and teach these commuters how to form a line, single file. I've almost done it, I swear, except that I know that people would think that I'm crazy. Really, I would only do it because I care. That, and the whole two methods of entering the streetcar really, really annoy me!

Friday, February 22, 2008

3 things that have me puzzled

1. Puretox. Apparently a Botox rival that is in clinical trials. Does anyone else find the name scary in addition to being an oxymoron?

2. Overhearing a conversation where a new employee is asked if they have a license. The answer is yes. Then at 8pm the night before said employee needs to pick up an RV, one of his main responsibilities, he decides to elaborate. Oh, I don't have an actual license - with a photo on it. What?

3. New accounting procedure: project emergency cash needs more than 2 weeks in advance. If I'm projecting 2 weeks in advance that is called a "plan" not an "emergency".

Sunday, February 17, 2008

I'm doin' it

Blogging, that is.

Will anybody read it? I wonder, does it matter? What will I gain from this? I suppose I hope to be able to distill my thoughts and be able to know myself a little better.

Either that or I'll just be rambling about knitting, food and complaining about work. Gee, do I really need a blog to do that?

Right now I'm sitting at In the Loop Cafe where I'm not knitting, but fielding phone calls from work and starting up my blog. I can be easily distracted. They have yummy scones, a nice selection of yarn and plenty of space.

http://www.intheloopcafe.com/

Tomorrow I will be off to the passport office before I embarrassingly don't have a current passport when the need to travel for work arises. Especially since I've reminded my team to be sure their passports are up to date.

What do I do? Well, I'm a production manager on a lifestyle tv show about real estate. I think I'm going to leave it vague for now.

And now I will be signing off because I really want to knit on the little colourful socks.

Merlot