Wednesday July 29 , 2015


I had an awesome dream last night that I was going to blog about this morning, but of course now I can’t remember what it was.

I’m reading “Lullabies for Little Criminals” well into the wee hours, though, so if you do that you can probably have my awesome dream, too.

I’m growing up, by the way, experiencing growth spurts, so blogging could get boggy with boogers.

Just kidding. I’ll ease into my maturity so you can’t be all, “Sooey got old, man. She used to be goofy. Now she thinks she’s so mature. I’m totally un-bookmarking her.”

I have this ideal of who I’m supposed to be, and it’s a much more active and involved citizen than I actually am, that I should do more because the more I do the more I’ve done, that I should make myself do things whether I feel like it or not, get involved, be part of the solution, join groups, get meaningful employment, visit family, friends, travel, have a job that does good.

(Okay. Whole work story deleted for book because I’m getting better at this whole book writing vs blogging thing as I mature.)

Anyway, I didn’t attend a random group social event, but I did my usual event that I do every week and that I make the time for because I know that it’s very important to actually physically go and do it (AA). And after I didn’t do the random group social event I realized that time management is an actual thing.

I know, I know, but better late than never.

Realizations being what they are it started raining realizations around here and I realized that I’m not commitment phobic, I just need to say “no” more often than “yes” and recognize that I like having a lot of downtime.

Prioritizing is an actual thing, too. Who knew?

I know, I know, every other adult on the planet.

All this to say that I’m looking to toss all my ideals of living a better life and making “good enough” my thing now.

Oh my goodness gracious. I think that’s the most freeing thing I’ve ever written here. Thanks, eh? You’re the best!

No wait, I mean, you’re good enough.



Your Morning Smile

I just saw a cartoon on Facebook that I think we can all either appreciate or lose our shit over and start a petition to have jokes banned from social media websites.

A patient is lying on a psychiatrist’s couch and the psychiatrist asks her, “Do any of your relatives suffer from mental illness?”

And she answers, “No! They all seem to enjoy it!”

Also, I saw that Conservative attack ad with the smug asshole interview panel sitting around and deciding not to hire Justin Trudeau for a bunch of subjective and arbitrary reasons that so many pundits out there in our punditocracy think is so good.

It’s as if the powers that be have no idea that thousands of un/underemployed Canadians – who still don’t have jobs anywhere near equal to the ones that we had when we were laid off by this government – imagine that’s exactly how it plays out after we shake hands with the smug asshole interview panel and leave the room.

Except for the compliment about having nice hair.

I finally said during an interview with one such panel of smug asshole interviewers on the other side of unemployment, “You realize this position is going for minimum wage, right? That’s what the agencies all bid for it, $11/hr. So that’s what this job is worth now, $11/hr. And I make that working in retail, which is more fun than working in government, so full disclosure, no, I’m not fluently bilingual.”

I didn’t get the job but the stunned look of incomprehension on the face of the Director General interviewing me for it was worth the bus fare.

It’s all good. I’d rather slum it in retail than work in government again anyway. Here today, gone tomorrow. Besides, we’re all middle-class now.



Today in Book Writing

Okay. I’ve discovered a plot device that gets me out of a jam. But it means a lot of stuff has to go, then a re-start, and good grief writing a book is hard.

Harder’n math if you really stop and think about it, which I wish I had done before I started going on and on about “My Book! My Book!” etc.

Oh dear. I just increased the talking about my book word count and decreased the writing my book word count, didn’t I.

Grr. Stupid ratios.

Well, don’t tell me I never gave you anything, cyber fans. Now get out there and feel good about yourselves at my expense!


Sick Daze

Ugh. I’ve got a cold. And is it my imagination or are colds worse than they used to be? Sore throat, aching bones, totally blocked airways, pain behind the eyes, aching ears.

But it’s all good because if you’ve ever suffered from a hangover (or a bajillion) and no longer drink, being legitimately sick with a virus that you caught through no fault of your own is almost fun.

So positives for today:

I’ll have my good health back in a couple of days. (Don’t worry, I knocked on wood.) In the meantime, I can’t do much right now so it’s a good time to take stock and build up confidence to make a few changes. Life is fantastic and only a stupid lazy ungrateful bitch would complain about it instead of DOING SOMETHING.

Yes, we had one of those corporate “be better” (i.e. do more for less) rallies at work the other day, and as I sat there listening to the motivational speaker I realized, yeah, I’m a square peg not only trying to make all the round holes be square, but trying to make all the round pegs be square, too.

McCarthy would have my head.

But I’m a people person, I like people. (If you don’t watch CBC because it’s all you have you may not get that reference but it’s from a commercial featuring a resident of a Chartwell prison for senior citizens with lots of money. In the commercial she’s pretending to be happy with her decision to give the Chartwell prison all of her pension and not completely panicked about the inescapable conclusion that if she lives too long, her rent will be more than her fixed income.)

I only contributed eye rolls to the meeting so after it I talked to the guest speaker (I felt guilty) and she suggested life coaching (of course).

But she’d already said what I needed to hear about it being my life, my time, and why spend it doing stuff you don’t want to do. And she didn’t say this so I eye rolled it for her – for peanuts, too.

And, you know, it’s not going to get any better. We really are all just casual labourers out here in this ever expanding retail work world we live in now. The message was very clear that HQ, whoever/whatever/wherever it is at this nano second in time, is committed to using casual labour to for the foreseeable future.

In fact, I doubt there’s any corporate memory left to compare how it is now with how it was when people were actual employees.

Anyway, while I’ve never minded being casual labour, and did always feel a sort of rising panic at the thought of being a bonafide employee, I just can’t respect any of this enough to keep on keeping on at it.

Tomorrow might even have to be a sick day – for a cold! Do you believe it? And we all know the end is nigh when we start taking sick days when we’re actually sick.



Sooey Starts A Thing

Every time a politician says we can’t afford to do something I think whoever is closest should shout back, “We can’t afford NOT to do it!” It’ll catch on fast, I bet.

Also the NDP should stop adding “if elected” after everything they propose to do and threaten to do it whether elected or not. You know, scare all those nervous nellies on CBC political panels into voting NDP one way or another.

And I think Canada Post’s home delivery shouldn’t just be restored, it should be expanded retroactively to include everybody with communal mail boxes. Surely there are worse things than a massive public service hiring blitz to the benefit of communities all across Canada.

Oh, and new hashtag idea: #BecauseWhyNot?


Celebrate With Tea and Toast

Well all you hardworking taxpaying families out there I just checked my bank account and week one of my two weeks of vacation pay is in – almost $200!

Whoo hoo, eh! Whoo hoo!


Casuals R Us

I’ve been writing conversations, trying to keep it real. Christ, it’s hard writing a book. I wish I’d written it already and could spend my free time doing arts and crafts.

Anyway, I made a comment on Dr. Dawg’s (where I’m not commenting anymore so don’t go looking for it) that I’m going to paraphrase here because I’m trying to work out for myself how it really is.

I think retail, which isn’t an industry so I can’t call it the retail industry, retail is how it really is now. And the problem with that, and it’s a problem because retail is too much of our economy, is that people who work for retailers aren’t employees.

We’re casuals. We’re a dime a dozen, our jobs are a dime a dozen, there’s no substance to any of it, no stake involved, it doesn’t matter.

Also, one of my co-workers is a young woman who struggles with English and who was fast-tracked to Canada as a highly skilled worker. And I have more in common with her, now, than I do with the public servants I used to know and who shop at our store.

I think that’s significant but I don’t see much recognition from various and sundry that it’s even happening, this sudden and drastic downsizing of individual economies. I mean, I’m okay with it, but I’m a very conservative person and I live a small and uncomplicated life.


Welcome Back Potter *Now Updated with Awesome Subtitle!

Just kidding.

*Awesome Subtitle Update: History ends when Herstory begins.

I’m referring of course to Andrew Potter’s interesting piece in the Ottawa Citizen in which he segues our love of nostalgia, with a heavy nod to Mad Men, and our lives lived online, over to the end of history, as predicted by someone supposedly named Francis Fukuyama in, yes, “The End of History”, which was published in 1989.

That’s the year I got married. A dozen years after that I discovered the internet and social media and almost immediately became a cyber super star.

Now I’m divorced.

You do the math.

The thing is, I have friends who love(d) watching Mad Men, women and pop culture aficionados, but I couldn’t watch it because I couldn’t get past the sexism and littering to appreciate the style.


I still agonize over that picnic scene. If you haven’t seen it, it’s one of those jarring ‘hit them over the head with it’ nods to a time that supposedly existed once but not anymore in which the characters go on a picnic in the woods, and when they’re done, they just leave the mess there, get in the car, and drive off.

Except then I give my head a shake so I can agonize over our deliberate cutting down of grabillions of hectares of boreal forest in Alberta – even though climate change!! – and then wasting bajillions of buckets of fresh water to steam oil out of sand so we can keep on keeping on driving those same old same old gas guzzlers and so on and so forth and more of the same etc etc.

Never mind all those forest fires started by people flipping the bird at Smokey Bear.

All happening here in the epicenter of the end of history, too, not even over in Europe where history’s been over ever since our biggest free trading partner – USA! USA! USA! – nuclear bombed Japan – twice!! – and ended it.

Anyway, not sure where I’m going with this and it’s 9:30 a.m. so I’m a 1/2 late for my book writing start, but it seems like whenever I try to look forward to a stylish future free of sexism and litter, there’s some man there to tell me to fuhgeddabboudit because there isn’t one.

Enh, could be worse, I suppose, we could be looking forward to the past everlasting.


See Ya, Suckers! I’m About To Become Rich! Rich, I Tells Ya!

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China Bank.

Hydro One on Line Two

I do feel bad for the young man at Hydro One who lost his job recently due to his own bad behaviour, but since he wouldn’t have nearly the responsibilities of so many Canadians who lost their jobs in random cuts to the public service in the past few years – through no fault of their own – my empathy is mitigated.

Or is my empathy extended further…

Because really, the hardest part of all of this for him, I’m pretty sure, is that he’s lost his job in such a public way that, well, I hope he’s getting counseling to talk him through this humiliation that he’s brought upon himself, and that he comes out the other side of it okay.

It’s a lot for a young man to endure these days…