Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Photo Challenge - April

Oh my God, it's the end of the month already? Hell I thought there was one more day. That's what happens when your birthday is on the 28th. You're still hung over on the 30th! There, did I make you smile? That's the theme of this month's photo challenge from P.J.

Now, let's see, what made me smile this month?

How about my grandson, Miko, who we took out for breakfast after his hockey game. He has a whole different concept when you ask him to "smile" for a picture.

This is the other side of the Louis-Hippolyte Lafontaine Tunnel in Montreal. It goes under the St. Lawrence River. It's a little disconcerting to see water dripping down throughout the tunnel. It gives Mrs D fits. But she was driving and I was...smiling.

There was just something photogenic about this guy at the Montreal Planetarium. He was smiling. At leafs I think that's a smile. Can you imagine how much toothpaste this guy would have to use. That thought made me smile.

In the middle of this picture is a CD by Brian Wilson called "Smile". There's a bit of a history to this CD. Wilson started work on it in 1966. It was to be the next Beach Boys album after Pet Sounds. Wilson's instability via mental illness and drugs is well known. The project was never completed...until finally in 2004 Wilson got it together, literally, finished the album with the help of Van Dyke Parks and released it. It won a Grammy.

I don't know about you but I like a good horror story from time to time. Things that go bump in the night, monsters under the bed and all that.  Lucky for me my monsters under my bed are happy monsters.

See everybody next month!

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

The Two Solitudes

So I spent Easter among the Natives. No, not the Indians, although now I kind of understand how Samuel de Champlain felt when he came upon the Algonquins.

Mrs D's mom was visiting us last week and we packed up the car and took off for Victoriaville to visit her sister and her Aunt. Victoriaville's about 2 hours east of Montreal. It took us about four and-a-half hours to drive from Aylmer. We waved at Nicky Eff as we drove through Montreal.

Tante Poutine, formerly of Warwick, Tante Bud Light, who is no longer with us, and Tante Lucienne all hail from either Warwick or nearby Victoriaville the poutine and maple syrup capitals of the world. And it's deep in Francophone country.

You know that song Englishman in New York by Sting? Yeah? Well magnify how he felt about ten times and you start to understand how I - the lone Anglophone - got on in Francophone country.

I tell you, ply these 80+ year-old women with alcohol - and they're just so damn polite, they never say no - and I was tempted to take out my hearing aids. That's right the decibel level of their conversation seems to increase with the amount of wine consumed. Alas, if only I could find a hearing aid that not only magnified conversations but translated them too.

But I nodded politely when my name was mentioned and threw in the appropriate oui and non when I thought they were required. I got the odd strange look when I got them wrong.

Now this is all my own fault. Firstly, I studied French in Government and promptly stopped using it when I got the requisite pass levels. Secondly, I married a Francophone. Thank god she's bilingual but still there are times I look at her and wonder "What the hell did she see in me?" But I'll save that story for another time.

But, hey, I guess it's true what they say: love is blind. And in my case, deaf and unilingual.

But listening to all those hard to understand conversations Easter weekend I came to a significant discovery. I think Mrs D's family is in the witness protection program. Unfortunately for them when they get excited and have had a few they let their actual family name slip. I pretended not to notice but often I heard them call each other Voyonsdonc*. Don't tell anyone, eh?

*Voyons donc, loosely translated means "Oh, come on" or "get out of town" or "shut the front door". My mother-in-law, her sister and their Aunt say it a lot.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

If You Gotta Go, Go Now

So I'm at the drugstore sitting, waiting for my prescription to be filled. I need some antibiotics for a cold and some medication to boost my chemo regime. There's these three chairs for people to use when they're waiting and next to them is a blood pressure machine. I suppose it's there to make us all fell guilty that we haven't been checking our pressure on a regular basis. Who me?

So, anyway I'm sitting there and across from me, staring me in the face is an aisle full of incontinence products. Yeah, you know, those plastic pants one can wear under their normal clothes.

To me, incontinence is largely associated with getting old. It's a serious condition, an embarrassing one, and I suppose these products go a long way in hiding this malady.

But I had to smirk as I read the wrappers that packaged up these medical marvels.

For instance one was titled "Active" and I thought, hey, just how active can an 80 year old be? Hell, I'm in my 60s and you think you can get me off the couch? Well, maybe if you waved a cheeseburger under my nose.

The next label was "Anywhere". Okay, fair enough, if you've got a peeing problem it could hit anywhere.

But the one that really killed me was the package with the label "Serenity". "Serenity"? Hell, if I have to pee in public the last thing I'm gonna feel is serene.

The other night Mrs D and I were watching the Food Network when one of these ads came on. She turned to me and said "Why is it only women seem to have this problem?" Now, I want to preserve my marriage. So, I didn't make some flip comment I merely shrugged. But she's right. It seems in the land of television advertising only women pee their pants.

Go figure.

You know I think these plastic pants people missed a perfect opportunity when they ignored using a big hit from the 60s for their advertising campaign. Yeah, see for yourself...

So finally, after 15-20 minutes of staring at plastic underpants my prescriptions were ready.

Good thing. I really had to go now.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

I've Fallen And I Can't Get Up

Who the hell watches daytime TV? Not me, normally. But I was convalescing from cataract surgery yesterday and was just kinda lying on the couch taking it easy. I started out watching the news channel and then after that got kind of repetitive switched over to the Game Show Network. There's something both networks had in common; Ads aimed at fat old people.

Between Nutri System commercials and ads for lawsuits due to strokes from testosterone gel or metal hip replacements I couldn't help but start to feel very, very old and very, very fat. Hell, Kerri lost 110 pounds! Way to go Kerri. I don't know if she emptied out her bank account purchasing the Nutri Syestem menu or not but whatever she did sure seems to have worked.

I can tell you, though, who didn't use Nutri System - those fat old people who fell in the shower, down the stairs or on the kitchen floor and couldn't get up. Lucky a friend or relative happened by to discover them just out of arms reach from that box of Krispy Kremes. And if those helpful friends hadn't happened by they might have starved to death. That's why they should have a monitor around their neck that alerts authorities that they've fallen and can't reach that dozen donuts. I don't know how much the monitor costs but it's gotta be worth it to result in being discovered before those double-chocolate dips go bad.

But you know what? It was worth putting up with Dick Clark and Bert Convey back from the grave hosting Pyramid and Super Password, not to mention those bloody commercials, if only to watch the host of the rejuvenated 1 vs 100 Carrie Anne Inaba. What a babe. I have no idea what the show was about but if there's any question about that form-fitting sexy black dress she was wearing I stand a good chance of winning.

If she fell, I wonder if she'd be able to get up?
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