Friday, April 25, 2014


I grew up in a small town, well I call it a ‘town’ but it probably never ever qualified as such since I was there…maybe in its finest hour post-my-birth it could have passed for a hamlet.  But regardless – I grew up in a rural area where a few ‘towns’ would send their children to one larger town to go to school.  You can imagine there weren’t terribly many of us.  The average class was about 10 students. 

And yet…we had roll call.


Every morning the teacher (who was also born and raised in the area, knew all our parents, knew their parents, and definitely knew their children) would say, ‘Tanya?’  Like she couldn’t see me or didn’t know which one I was.

And dutifully I’d say, ‘Present.’

On some days when I’d maybe rolled out the wrong side of my bed – which was under the circumstance, nearly impossible, my bed being next to a wall – yet, even back then – back then when I had no responsibilities – no idea yet what the hell a T4 was, that gas or toilet paper cost actual money, or that if I left my dirty socks on the floor by the bed they could in fact, remain dirty socks beside a bed for endless weeks –  I somehow managed to have bad days.  How that was, I have no idea.  But on these days I wouldn’t offer my reply quite as promptly.

The teacher would ask, “Tanya?”


Then again, “Tanya?” as she stared at me.

On the third, “Tanya?”, I would reply, “Present.”

Then all would be well and she could move along. 

I often wondered what happened if I was sick.

How long did she stand there asking, “Tanya?”

At what point did she mark you as ‘Absent’?  Did someone have to tell her?  Did she have a 5 time maximum?  I wish now that I would have been stronger back then, waited her out, stayed silent until she finally conceded and marked me as absent even though I was clearly sitting there in desk number 6/10.  How shocked she would have been when I didn’t answer, she finally went ahead and marked me as ‘Absent’, and then an hour or so later I raised my hand to answer a question in class!  Would she have fainted out of sheer surprise?  Or simply went on like she’d known all along I was there? 

Could you get detention if you weren’t even there as per roll call?  I bet not.  Damn.


…sigh…another opportunity missed.


Friday, April 18, 2014

further to my previous post...

Uh.  My mother just 'advised' me I should be shopping in 'adult only' stores...well, uh, ok...I suppose the toys I'd find there wouldn't be for the little ones..... 



Advice from an Auntie

I highly, highly recommend that before you decide to have nieces and nephews you get yourself a decent job - everything costs more after you become an auntie.

For instance, I finished reading The Book Thief and needed another book to get through the rainy Vancouver days so I stopped by the local book store.  I picked up a recommended read for $17.00.  Then I walked to the counter to pay.  That's all I did - walk through the store to the counter to pay.  By the time I reached the counter, my seventeen dollar book cost me $51.66.

And don't even get me started about what happens in toy stores, even just walking by a toy store can cost what would otherwise be a pair of shoes...oh how I miss the days when I could afford shoes!

Some people brag when December 1st rolls around...they say, "I have ALL my christmas shopping done already!"

Ya, well I have nieces and nephew that are 5, 3-minus-a-few-days, 1, and almost 1 and I have all my christmas shopping done until at least the first one hits 10.

So there.

I also need a second job if you hear of anyone that's hiring...maybe something in a shoe store, but not one that sells cute little miniature shoes in children's sizes...


Friday, March 14, 2014

Excuse me, you're dripping.....

Do you know what freaks me out?

Drops of liquid on the floor of a bathroom stall.

How??!  How does that happen?  Girls wipe, not shake – I don’t care what number it is.  The ceiling isn’t leaking.  You didn’t come out with a glass of water that spilled.  And the sink is outside the stall so it’s not like those drops fell from your fingers between the sink and the paper towel.  So how did the droplets get there??! 

AND, even if you ‘forgot’ to wipe, just like you ‘forgot’ to wash your hands on the way out, when you stand up, wouldn’t your ‘droplets’ land on you own gotch?  Standing with your pants down or your skirt hiked, you would still have your gotch between you and the floor, no?  Or did you also forget your gotch?  

To all the gotchless, non-wipers out there – when you go to the bathroom, take a freakin’ mop.  No one in the world has any desire to step in your floor pee. 

…I wonder…does your cat have a litterbox or does everyone in your house just pee on the floor?

Friday, February 21, 2014


Here's what happens in Canada when the Olympic men's hockey gold medal match is scheduled for the wee hours of the morning:

Alberta opens their bars early.
Saskatchewan keeps their bars open.
BC tells their bars they can open, but they can't serve alcohol.

WTF?  I don't deserve this - I didn't riot.  I should get to do the canadian thing too and have a beer while I watch hockey, but NNNNOOOOO...all these west coasters - these perfect hippies with their bicycles and yoga mats, and their environmentally friendly cloth bags full of organic greens, and their pent up rage - went and ruined it for everyone...


Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Who Would Do THAT?!?!

It is not right to judge other people.  I have always believed this with one exception - those olympians who involve themselves in skeleton sliding – they are the exception.  CLEARLY they are insane.  I mean who chooses to slide down a treacherous track on a 2 and a half foot long board - face-first, arms uselessly at their sides, with only a thin layer of spandex as protection?  With only their aura surrounding them, they reach speeds that would have them arrested on the highway if they were in a steel framed, air-bag-equipped one ton truck!  To choose this, one has to be certifiable – of that, I am sure. 

On a recent visit to Whistler I went to the Whistler Sliding Center - the site of the 2010 Olympic bobsled, luge and skeleton track - a track well known as the fastest track in the world.   As I entered the visitor center, I noticed sitting just inside the door was a skeleton sled.  Seeing that sled first-hand validated my previous judgement.  “Those people are crazy,” I said out loud.  I could barely even look at the contraption and imagine a person on their belly with their face hanging off the front and their legs hanging off the back, just inches off the ground, without feeling a little ill.  

Luckily I am not crazy, so I walked past the skeleton and went to sign my waiver for the bobsled ride.  You see, there is crazy and then there is adventurous.  I am adventurous.  So yes. I was there to travel down the fastest track in the world at speeds of over 120 km/hr and experience a g-force around 3-4g’s, but I would be sensibly sitting upright in a bobsled - not laying on a glorified crazy carpet face-first.  No, I am not trained in the sport of bobsled, but I figured that if 4 guys from Jamaica could do it, then surely a girl born in the middle of a Saskatchewan winter could too.  Plus, they gave me a helmet and a safety lesson.    

So after a ten minute video I climbed my little butt into the bobsled with a fellow Saskatchewanite who grew up around snowmobiles (surely an asset), an Aussie who grew up around kangaroos and jellyfish (not an asset) and a guy who had been down the track several times before (we let him steer).  And together we reached a top speed of 124.6 km/hr.  It was the best 41.53 seconds of my week by far!  

We climbed out of the sled after it was all said and done, adrenaline pumping through our veins and excited chatter falling from our lips.  Then the lady from the sliding centre said, ‘It’s amazing hey?!  You should try the skeleton!”

A few minutes later, as the three of us traded in our bobsled helmets for smaller helmets and goggles and headed back up the track, I wondered if you put two Saskatchewanites and an Aussie in the same room if any good decision would ever get made...  My first time on a skeleton slide was a little scary as I fought the g-force pushing my head down onto the ice when I reached a speed of 96 km/hr.  But, my second time was just plain exhilarating as I let my chin scrape on the ice without resistance and I pointed my toes to make myself more aerodynamic.  I don’t mean to brag, but on that second run I reached a top speed of 98.05 km/hr and shaved .22 of a second from my previous time!  

I know what you are thinking, but you know, it is really not right to judge anyone...


Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Library

Friday after work I went to the Library. 

Now I know what you are thinking - 4 years in university and the girl barely steps foot in the library and now that's what she does on friday after work?! 

It's not that I never went to the library in those days - I did go once, but I found the people weren't very social.  I didn't like it.  So many people and I couldn't talk to any of them.  I felt like a cat beside an aquarium.  Anyhow, I tried to go back from time to time, I truly tried, but in my defense, if they really wanted us to go to the library they wouldn't have put it so close to the Den...

So, it's friday afternoon and the people said, "let's go to the Library!"

All I could think was, great.  Vancouver - where no one eats whales, no one is pro-oil-spills, no one is seen without a starbucks in one hand and a yoga mat in the other and now this...friday after work and they want to drag me to a Library...  I was contemplating if I could be turned into a tofu-eating yogi but I draw the line at this.  Friday after work is reserved for one thing and one thing only. 

But when you are somewhere new and have limited friends, well - beggars can't be choosers.  I went to the Library.

Imagine my delight when The Library turned out to be a pub!

It's crazy brillant isn't it?!  Why did the UofC not think of this years ago??  If they called the Den, the Library, I would have gone three times a week!!  Just imagine how smart I'd be now....sigh...


Sunday, January 12, 2014

Dear Diary

It has been 7 days now in which I have been trapped on this soggy on the ark is progressing slowly.  Curling irons and nice shoes have been abandoned.  Food supplies are running low.  The only way to replenish them would be to venture 4 blocks, but travel is ill advised for umbrellas and rubber boots have proven futile weapons against such force.  Word hasn't travelled far being the outside world is suffering from power outages, but I remain hopeful that a rescue party will find us here soon.  The current shelter is holding up, but I expect it won't be long before rainwater begins to seep through....  Spirits on the island are begining to wan.  Its been 7 days in this gray world and there is no sign of reprieve.  Oh how I long for summer.  To see light and cloudless skies.  To feel warm and dry.  I pray that the bailing buckets remain intact, I pray that this island does not get washed to sea, I pray that the ark reaches completion in time.  In this bleak world only one thing seems certain - those summers of my youth spent collecting swimming badges will surely not go to waste.

I must sign off now, it is time to gather wood from which to fashion spears to fend off sharks and pirates should this land be swept away and a life at sea begin.  The rainwaters are pooling, it seems there is little time left for preparation.  I shall sleep this night in a life jacket; a preserver as my pillow.


Friday, January 10, 2014

Dear Mr. Realtor...merry christmas to you too....

So here’s the thing. There are certain expectations one has in life.  One of them is when you buy a home, you will get a little house-warming gift from your realtor. 

I never did. 

My realtor was away when I picked up the keys to my place - he said he’d come by and drop something off later, but never did.  I was disappointed sure, I mean a precedent has been set in this area, it’s become an expectation when you trade in your life savings for four walls.  But I chalked it up to, ‘well he forgot’.  And I’ve tried to just not think about it, which works fine except that people keep asking for my realtor...cause aside from the lack of chocolate I was really happy with him.  But I feel like I can’t give out his name...I want my friends to have that ‘awww’ moment when they open their thank you card.  But then, I was really happy with him so I want to recommend him.  Ugh, such a dilemma…

Then, the other day, in the mail – almost a year to the date of when I purchased my home – came an envelope.    

“Oh my gosh, he remembered!!”  All my problems were solved!  I ripped it open expecting to find a note, ‘hope you are enjoying your new home!” and a gift card or a very tiny, very flat bottle of wine.  Instead I found a Christmas card with his signature and his business card tucked inside.  It was almost insulting…he sent me business cards?!?!...this he remembers to do!?!

But silly as it seems, I still hold out hope, maybe he’ll remember in the spring when he’s staring out the window, looking at the world turn green then suddenly he’ll think, oh geez, I never did get that basket of cheese to Tanya….I better go do that now.  It’ll be all moldy, but I’d still take it!!

Yes.  When it comes to these things, I’m ever the optimist!