May 28, 2014

Life Ain’t a Track Meet, It’s a Marathon

Holy fuck, where do I even begin? I guess I’ll begin by saying that if you don’t follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you’re probably missing a lot and will continue to miss a lot because honestly I’m too busy doing stuff right now to e-mail myself the pics from my phone that I’ve posted on Instagram just to upload and repost them on my blog to tell a story. I may post like, highlights, but I’m not going to cross-post that stuff here unless Instagram gives me a button that allows me to do so, like it does for Facebook (but not my fan page and no offence, I don’t want randoms on my personal Facebook), Twitter and tumblr, to which I cross-post lots of stuff, but still not everything. Life is 3-dimensional and social media is a reflection of that I think. Anyway, I’m using it to document life as it happens and since I’m doing that in real time, I often don’t feel the need to have to write about it in order to process the experience, which is why I started blogging in the first place. I’m not saying I’m not going to blog anymore…I’m just saying if you want a more complete picture or you’re wondering what I’m doing in between blog posts, those are the places to check. No pressure, I’m just sayin’. Because a lot of you aren’t reading this on my site where those links are like, *right there —>*

That said, there are going to be some pics in this post.

My shrink doubled my cipralex (anti-depressant), which had me taking a whole pill and then I wasn’t feeling better so she had me up it by half a pill and I was supposed to call her on Monday but I’m having serious phone phobia and honestly I don’t even know how I feel so I don’t know what to tell her. I think I’m mostly good?

 I mean, I’m not suicidal anymore so obviously the meds are working but I still kinda feel flat when I think I’m supposed to feel happy or excited or proud of achievements or whatnot so I think I’m going to ask her to up it by another half pill so I’m taking 2 pills and leave me there for a while, maybe over the summer, to see how things shake out. She’s retiring in August so I kinda wanna get this shit worked out before then.

I’m over the new car. I kinda like air conditioning. The moon roof is handy for when you’re smoking a joint in the car. The stereo is better than in the old car, which I guess I’ll start referring to as either “my car” or the “Sunnymobile”, and it came with a subscription to XM radio which I actually really like and wish I had that in my car. And his stereo is super smart and if I plug my iPod into it, you can control the iPod on the car’s nerdscreen. So that’s sorta cool. And when I call him while he’s driving I can actually hear him so that’s a bonus. What else? I dunno, whatever, it’s a stereo you (well, he) can drive.

Madison turned 16 on the 16th and she had a party with some of her friends where lots of sushi and ice cream cake was consumed. In a rare act of bravery on the 15th, I called my favourite flower shop – on the phone- which is in Barrie, and asked them if it would be possible to have 16 roses sent to Madison’s school on her birthday the next day for under $60. The lady on the phone was super nice and worked it out so that she could do a mixture of short-stemmed roses for about $50 and delivering to a school was no problem. So she asked what school and when I told her she said, “oh dear, that’s out of our delivery area” and I felt SO defeated because it took so much courage to even make this call and they really are my favourite flower shop and I told her so and I asked her if she could refer me to a shop that could deliver to Madison’s school. So she starts google-fuing within her flower system and she’s like, “geez, you don’t really have a lot of options…” and she gave me the name of a shop in Wasaga Beach that MIGHT deliver to our town but she said she couldn’t speak to their quality etc. Then she said, “what if we did it today instead?” and I was like, “wha’?” and she said, “my driver just got back and my boss isn’t in today, let me ask him if he’ll do it”, so she put me on hold and when she came back, she was excited and said he’d do it and I got excited and damn near cried and when she told me the total, I asked her if she could please add an extra $5 for the driver because that was super nice of him/them and after 20 minutes on the phone, Madison was getting roses at school that afternoon. I was pretty proud of myself for doing that when literally I don’t think I’d used the phone to call anyone outside of my immediate family in a good year or more. I just don’t use the phone, it freaks me out. Anyway, Madison liked her flowers. Her ex sent her crappier flowers the next day at school from an inferior flower shop and Madison handed them out to people.

So Madison turned 16, then the Sunday and Monday after that Blake and I got to know the new car. Then on the Tuesday, the first day I was left alone with the keys to my own car, the craziest damn thing happened: Madison and I went to the mall. In Barrie. I have never driven to Barrie, half an hour-40 mins away before and have purposely avoided it because there is lots of traffic and you have to go over 80 km/h, which to everyone else means 90 or 100 and then the road splits into 2 lanes in a couple of places and it’s just generally a more difficult drive than say, the beach, which is two turns and 10 minutes away. The mission was pretty simple: get to the mall, smoke a joint, have mall teriyaki because it’s the best teriyaki, go to Spencer’s Gifts to find accessories for our (Madison & mine’s) new car, drive home before dark.

This is my pretty perfect mall joint.
(I cheat and use a rolling machine. :oP)

For the record, I don’t drive while medicated and I don’t think anyone else should either.

I know some people say they’re better drivers while stoned and I’ve witnessed this phenomenon myself, but everyone’s different and I would never in a million years get behind the wheel if I didn’t feel it was safe to do so.

Keep in mind that I am a terrified, by the book, go the speed limit kinda driver who does everything in her power to avoid any and all conflict so it’s just not in my nature to fuck around.
I have literally never even had a single drink and driven. Like…it’s just, no.

Anyway…

That is me, in the driver’s seat, parked perfectly between two yellow lines, in the parking lot of the Georgian Mall in Barrie (that tall sign is the mall sign).

We got there and I smoked my joint and we went in.
Oh yeah, I didn’t take ANY anxiety meds during this trip.

Mall teriyaki was gotten.
I ordered and paid all by myself.
Mine was beef, Madison got tofu.

After we ate, I did take 2 Ativan because the mall apparently freaks me out more than actually driving there, and then we went to look for Spencer’s Gifts. We found it and it was sadly devoid of anything I’d ever put on my vehicle. Madison pointed out a couple of weed-related car things but that’s just asking to get pulled over and harassed and Madison and I would rather avoid the hassle. I did put a Liquid Chrome sticker on the back window though, which is the smoke shop in Barrie. That’s a little more subtle than a giant rasta-coloured weed leaf or something. And we have the Flying Spaghetti Monster “Jesus fish” on the back of the car with Bubbles from the Powerpuff Girls hanging with one of John’s suncatchers from the rearview. Those are our car decorations so far. Madison has been told to keep an eye out for others. I don’t even know where you would buy a plastic/vinyl bumper sticker as opposed to a  regular sticker that’s just glossy and bumper sticker-shaped. Those are no good. I’m thinking the dollar store but I don’t think the dollar store is gonna have the kinda stuff I want to put on my car. I don’t even KNOW what kinda stuff I wanna put on my car! All I know, is that it’s really really boring, and it’s too new/I’m too poor/uninspired to sand it down and paint like my mom did with her old van. The thought had definitely crossed my mind but I just don’t have that kind of dedication and even she would probably agree it would be ill-advised. Although the idea of this car eventually being a derby car sorta made my heart skip a beat, but that would be a looooong ways off. Did buy $10 worth of crap NO ONE needs and figured I’d spent about $2.50 in gas which made me sort of freak out once I got home because with that and food that was an expensive experiment and it just completely overshadowed any “good” that would have come from it. (My mom didn’t want me to worry about it so she paid for the outing though. <3)

The next day, I decided to google a decent-looking recipe for Steak and Guinness Stew because I really like the kind at the pub but it’s like, $11 all told and you don’t really get very much. I figured it can’t be very expensive to make, so I got a recipe, made a list and went to go to the grocery store because it’s in town, so it only takes gas fumes to get there and I can park in the parking lot away from everyone else and spend Blake’s money instead of mine. He said  if I made it there, like when we were driving around in the new car breaking it in over the weekend, I told him I was scared of buying like, $300 worth of groceries if left to my own devices because I’m bad at math and I do a lot of “just in case” purchasing. So he made it pretty simple: if we needed it because it’s something we’re out of, get it and as for anything else, only get it if I think we’re going to use it in the next 24 hours. This is why I went in with the ingredients for a recipe I intended to make once I got home. And because driving alone and navigating the grocery store and paying alone weren’t difficult enough, I decided to raise the difficulty level by adding BEER. I have been in The Beer Store only once, with Madison, that one time she and I decided Blake needed beer when he got home and we carried it home as a surprise. It was 11am, I knew it wouldn’t be busy, but it is Elmvale, so that was really just a theory. Who knows what time farmers start drinking? Really though, the challenge with getting beer at The Beer Store here is that potentially the only way to obtain it is if I parallel parked, which I will flat out tell you, I do not know how to do. And I do not care that I do not know how to do it. BUT! Like I said, I’d be getting there shortly after they open on a Wednesday, chances are no one will be parked out front.

Got to the grocery store and parked a million miles away from all other cars because the less shit around me that I could potentially hit or back into, the better. Here are some pics from my trip:

I bought like, 30 cents worth of these with the intention of Madison making them for the kids to try (she’s vegetarian and likes t o try new things) but I threw them out today because forest food is super perishable and I just completely forgot to tell Madison they were there or what to do with them. Oops.

This is a shaker of pure MSG.

Blake says some of the guys at work  have this stuff at their desk to put on takeout food and I’d never seen it before in the wild AND my friend Paul had just linked to an article about this stuff and a guy who spent 30 days putting it on everything he ate and it didn’t seem to really affect him in any way, if I recall, so I threw this in the cart. More because Blake would find it funny than to actually consume because I grew up that MSG was what caused migraines and that it was super bad for you so I can’t bring myself to actually put it on anything but Blake’s been using it.

I also got these awesome corn trays for our family because Blake wasn’t there to tell me they’re dumb.
I, for one, will greatly enjoy using these because plates are for the birds when it comes to even butter distribution, which is essential.

Checking out went pretty smoothly except that I forgot to bring bags (though truthfully I bet they were in my  trunk) so I had to buy some, but other than the fact that I took 10 times longer in the grocery store to get 10 times less stuff than if I were with Blake because I kept taking pictures of things and uploading them to Instagram…

Next up was the Elmvale Beer Challenge.

I took the back street home and turned right at the library where I had to wait and could scope out the front of the beer store pretty well. Much to the delight of my lucky ass, NO ONE was in front so I just parked on the street and went in. The Beer Store is extra challenging also in that you have to ask for what you want. I thought ahead though and printed out my recipe with a picture of the exact kind of Guinness it called for, so all I did was show the guy the picture and tell him “I want as little of this as possible”. Turns out it came in 4-packs so I got that and came home, TRIUMPHANT!

The stew turned out pretty well, I thought, but Blake wasn’t a huge fan and it didn’t taste as good as the pub’s so the quest for the ultimate Steak and Guinness Stew recipe is still on.

Another day, Madison and I went to get Chinese food. This was my fortune cookie:

Twice now, Blake has shown me how to get to Penetanguishene and Balm Beach and Midland and even though I can pretty much recite the directions, I don’t feel confident enough on those windy backroads where people go way too fast. I’m working on it though. I’d really like to be able to go to Froth by myself eventually. I ordered a windshield mount for my phone and I’ve signed up for Waze and as of tomorrow or sometime very soon, I’ll have the equivalent of AAA and once all that is in place, I think I’ll be more prone to venture farther away from home because with Waze I pretty much can’t get lost. Anyway, there’s a church on the way to and from Penetang that I like sometimes so I took a picture of it last week:

Anyway, it’s taken me all damn day to get this written up between doing other things (like driving to Wasaga Beach by myself for the first time to get myself lunch which I ordered over the phone and paid for by myself), I’ve gotta take my meds, figure out what everyone’s doing for dinner and watch Bates Motel. Peace oot.

PS. If anyone knows anything about seatbelts for dogs, lay it on me.

May 18, 2014

Random Sunday Morning Memory

When I was little, my Aunt Sandra lived with my grama because she was just out of high school, really, and not married yet, and as a side job, she was a clown. Her named was “Giggles” (I think) the clown and people would hire her for parties and stuff. I remember one time she convinced my grama to come out clowning with her (YES, *my* antichrist grama!), so they did her all up as a clown and a clowning they went! I can’t remember what my grama’s clown name was or really any details about Aunt Sandra’s clowning other than I had a LOT of balloon animals made for me, but that’s pretty lucky I think. To be able to say, “yeah, when I was little, my Aunt was a clown”. My childhood was magical in some respects, as all childhoods are. That’s just one aspect.

May 14, 2014

Devil Car 666

I was not okay yesterday and I’m barely okay today. When shit’s blowing up (this car shit + the table breaking and the roof leaking all in one day) and I’m already depressed and struggling to maintain even the most basic tasks, things spiral down very quickly and the persistent suicidal thoughts take over and I become fixated on them and can’t see anything else. Everything becomes so hopeless and I believe my life to mean so little that I’ll spend whole days seriously plotting its logistics for the least impact. My own car is just one more suicide method. A rather good one.

After Blake got home from work yesterday, we drove around talking and arguing until around 11pm and we are getting the standard transmission testicle-cooler all for Blake’s very own personal, exclusive use and I guess that must mean I get the next new car because it’s not like I can just inherit Blake’s when mine dies since he didn’t buy a car I can drive. And he said last night that I “deserve” a car and that I’ve “earned” one, so I take that to mean from now until death do us part, he expects us to be a 2-car family, which I guess is fine, if that’s how he wants us to be.

Madison turns 16 on Friday which makes her eligible to take the written test to get her learner’s permit (G1). If she passes that test, she has her G1 licence which means for a year she can only drive if someone else who has been fully licenced for I think more than 5 years is in the car with her and since I’m home all the time, I feel like the expectation is that’s primarily going to be me because she won’t benefit from having 2 cars otherwise. She’s going to be taking a driving course called Young Drivers of Canada which is how I learned how to drive and how most of my friends learned how to drive and successful completion of this course means you can take the test for your G2 licence (where you can drive by yourself) in 8 months instead of waiting the year. I will not get in a car with her behind the wheel until she has completed this course.

We don’t even have any plans to take Madison for her test and I have no idea if she’s even studied or is ready. And since that hasn’t been planned and she hasn’t passed that test, Blake hasn’t enrolled her in Young Drivers yet.

Realistically when she’ll be ready to take her test, it’ll be winter and you don’t want to take your test in the winter, so that means she can’t even drive the car until spring, which makes me wonder how having a second car BEFORE next spring, like we originally talked about, makes any sense if we’re going to be using benefit to Madison as an excuse. ESPECIALLY when Blake says she can’t drive it until she can afford to pay her own insurance. The way I see it, we’re looking at a year until she is capable of independently taking the car anywhere, even with Young Drivers, and I don’t need a car, so I’m still not totally sure why this purchase couldn’t wait a year when we could afford an automatic transmission *and* still keep the car we have now.

I’m sure Blake will have a reason.

Madison will not be allowed to take the car to school unless there is a specific reason, like she has to transport a heavy object, because that defeats the primary purpose of me having my own car. It does me no good if it’s sitting in the school parking lot all day.

Blake and I agree that she needs to be fully licenced and driving well in an automatic before he even tries to teach her standard, if she even wants to learn.

Ultimately it is my car and if I don’t want Madison to drive it for whatever reason, I’m allowed to say no, I have ultimate veto power.

Another thing is that if it’s 4am (or any time) and I want to go to the store to get a Red Bull before work but Blake’s car is in the way and I can’t move it, I have full permission to wake him up so he can do it. Same with snow shoveling before he goes to work/Madison goes to school so I can get out during the day in the winter should I need to.

I also don’t get oil changes or do anything on the car that would be considered “maintenance”. I’m not even driving it to places where it would get maintenance.

Since Blake is picking up the new car on Friday and Madison is having her birthday party at our house also on Friday which is already a super stressful thing, I told Blake that I was scared I’d end up ruining Madison’s birthday by losing my shit when that thing pulls into my driveway. I’m legitimately afraid of taking my own life, so I can’t guarantee I can “do the right thing” and hold it together in front of Madison and her friends. I don’t feel safe in my mind and I don’t feel safe in my life. So Blake asked if he brought it to the house a different day if that would be better and we agreed on Sunday because I didn’t want to be potentially stressed out and freaking before 9 hours of work on Saturday either. I am so stressed out at “meeting” this car that even writing that sentence makes me feel like throwing up but knowing I don’t have to deal with it AT ALL until Sunday makes the whole thing a little better. I know that the more we talk about it, the more I’ll be okay with it and potentially the sooner it can be here, like maybe early Saturday morning, because it just occurred to me that if Blake and the kids are out joyriding in that thing all day Saturday while I’m working after we agreed on easing me into this thing for very specific reasons, I *will* lose my shit completely and 911 will need to be called and we will probably have to get a divorce and that is no joke. Since Blake said this entire thing is my fault for not saying what I mean, I think I need to convey that to him. I think that would be a billion times worse than it just showing up in my driveway on Friday. I think we need to double certify this plan.

The other thing that we discussed is that…remember how a while back I was talking about this photography project I wanted to do and that I was going to apply for a grant that would have enabled me to hire an assistant who could drive? WELCOME TO SLAVE LABOUR. Madison has no daily chores anymore, Wes has inherited those, she just has bigger things to do on the weekends/periodically. Blake said that I could make this project BE her chores. So there’s that to consider. I question my nerve, skill and equipment but the possibility is still a little bit exciting.

Anyway, I see my shrink today at 3pm. I will be requesting an increase in cipralex.

So much for my summer plans….

1st use.
Madison opened the umbrella to read a book on the porch.
There was a wind gust but she says not a strong one and it wasn’t a windy day but it blew the umbrella and this was the result.
Bought at Wal*Mart.
We do not have the box.
We do not have a receipt.

May 12, 2014

Ooooh You Fancy

Saturday morning, Blake and I went to Cora’s for breakfast, as has been our tradition for the last few weeks, and on our way back, Blake asked if I minded if we stopped in at the Hyundai dealership because he wanted to ask about a car. He’s been talking about cars for the last couple of weeks but I thought it was just talk in preparation for later. As far as I knew, we weren’t getting a new car until next spring. Apparently I misunderstood and long story short, Blake bought a new car on Saturday and he picks it up on Friday. He, unbelievably to me, bought a car that I can’t drive because it’s standard and DO NOT tell me I can learn because that is not the goddamn point. Driving is almost impossible for me as it is and he bought a car that adds a great big serving of extra difficulty. And don’t tell me it’s easy either. Fuck you. Again, that is not the point.

So now that I’ve said that, now that I’ve stated to the universe for the record that I am absolutely livid and deeply hurt that he did this, allow me to continue.

See, what happened was he was telling me about all the features over the phone while I was trying to work and I was like, “I do not give a fuck this is not my car, I will not be driving it”. It never even occurred to me in a billion years that he would buy a car that only he could drive. Standard transmissions simply do not exist in my world.  I don’t know how they work, I don’t know how to work them and I don’t fucking care because they make these crazy newfangled fancy automatic transmissions now and in 2014, people who “drive stick” on purpose and are proud of it are beyond my comprehension. Unless you’re driving a Mack truck or a tractor I just don’t see the point. There are two types of people guaranteed to annoy the ever-loving shit out of me: first, “horse people”, keep those fuckers away from me; secondly, “car men” (and I say “men” because I’ve known a million of those but only one person I’d consider a “car woman”). Those are two subjects I have negative interest in so if those are your primary areas of expertise, um, I’m sorry, and you better be super funny or have other interests or something because we probably aren’t going to be friends otherwise. And until last night at around midnight when Madison told me he bought a car with a standard transmission, I thought Blake felt the same way. If people asked what kind of car he had, he said “a red one” because the kind AND even the colour he would say, ultimately, didn’t matter because we picked the colour the dealership had that day. But standard transmissions apparently exist in Blake’s world so when that was presented to him by the salesman, who I’m sure was a real swell guy, with a million bells & whistles for only like, $20 more a month than we were paying for our current car (which we only stopped making payments on recently) that the fanciest thing on it is that the FRONT windows are power windows, the back ones aren’t though, that’s how base model it is, Blake went for it. Because after all, I wasn’t going to be driving it anyway, right? He thinks this detail SO INSIGNIFICANT that he doesn’t even tell me about it. I know it has a moon roof (who fucking cares, that’s stupid and if I could have picked one without that I would have). It has ass warmers. I know it has cruise control, which I’m glad he has. I know it has air conditioning, which I’m glad he has. I know it has a rear-facing camera, which is just whatever. Blake could parallel park the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile in the middle of Toronto during a blackout. Big fucking deal. It has bluetooth something and a big screen on the dashboard so he can see in super big letters what song he’s listening to. It doesn’t have GPS or anything useful on that screen, just basically music information. According to Blake. So this to me is nothing more than unnecessary  nerdbait. So I know ALL OF THIS BULLSHIT THAT I DON’T CARE ABOUT OR I’M IMPRESSED BY IN ANY WAY, but he doesn’t tell me, “oh and I’m the only one who can drive it”. Uh, that should be fact #fucking 1 when you call me on the phone asking me if you should buy the fucking thing. Oh and I know it’s silver. That should be fact #fucking2.

When he came home from the dealership he said “we” bought a car. There was no “we” involved. There was no “we” in his thinking. Blake bought himself a car that only he can drive. A car that we didn’t even need because the only thing wrong with the old one was that it didn’t have AC or cruise control. Let me state for the record that when we bought the last car, I told him to get both of those things and when he said money would have to come from other places, I said that was fine. Because I was actually at the dealership for that one. The only reason I wasn’t at the dealership this time was because I had to work.

And I know full well how venomous I’m being right now. I warned Blake that I would be processing this ENTIRE car thing – because there’s more to it than this – via blog because that’s just what I do. I’m writing this NOW so I don’t bring it up in every fight we have from now until we die.

Having said all this, here’s what Blake really did or thought he was doing:

– made it supposedly financially feasible for me to have my own car despite my having no use for one
– Madison turns 16 on Friday and will be getting her learner’s permit on Monday, so he’s enabled her to have access to something to practice on…if I’m with her.
– got the air conditioning and cruise control that we wanted to get in the old car because he has a 4 hour commute twice a week which sucks 2 months out of the year, but couldn’t afford at the time

The car he bought, supposedly, *was* “just what they had”, like the floor model, when they said “standard or automatic?” to google their inventory Blake probably said it didn’t matter because Blake doesn’t care about cars (supposedly) and is really cheap, so he wants the most bang for his very small buck. To get a more modest car or an automatic transmission, he said it would have cost more money and we would either have had to trade in or sell the car we have now or wait another year to get a second car because I guess spring is the best time to buy cars because of reasons, I dunno and I don’t want Blake to have to go another summer without AC & cruise control. It’s just the fact that I wasn’t even a consideration in the most important aspect of this supposed “married people ‘we’ purchase”.

When Blake and I were talking about it last night because you’re goddamn right I woke his ass up in the middle of the night when I found out he bought a car I cannot drive, he told me to pretend like he hadn’t signed the paperwork yet and to tell him what decision to make because if it bothered me that much, he was pretty sure he could get out of it. He’d probably lose his deposit but the deal didn’t need to take place. But he presented me with all of these scenarios that ended up with us still only having one car or still only having the old car with no air conditioning or cruise control which he refuses to be an option, so there really wasn’t a choice to be made if those were the only options.

So as of Friday, Blake has a new car. A new car that I can’t drive. It’s silver and it’s fancy. I haven’t even seen it and I despise everything about it. I despise how we came to have it and I despise what it means. I just want to take a crowbar to the fucking thing and light it on fire. I will celebrate every dent and ding of this car’s natural born life. The more I write, the angrier I get and the more I don’t know if I can do this. I feel like I’m being lied to and manipulated, like there probably WAS another option and he’s just lying because he wants air conditioning so badly OR the salesguy is full of crap and actually CAN give us a better deal on a car I can live with. He says this is the cheapest car on the market, well maybe I don’t believe that. Maybe we could go to another dealership and tell them what this dealership is offering and they can give us something better that is more modest and more inclusive. Blake does it all the time with the cable companies. I just feel like he didn’t even try at all, and I know he didn’t because I wasn’t a thought in his mind.  I should have never said yes. No one should walk into a dealership and just buy a car the same day. That’s not enough time to think. That tells me they got suckered/upsold into something and Blake’s just not telling me what or he hasn’t realized it yet. For THAT DAY ONLY we could get no payments for 60 days. Why only that day?

SOMETHING IS JUST WRONG. THIS HAPPENED TOO FAST.

So as of Friday, I have my own car. Yay. It’s going to sit in the driveway and rot. Maybe I’ll take a crowbar to that one and light that one on fire. Drive it into a wall. It is mine he said, after all. Blake says it’s normal for families to have 2 cars but it doesn’t feel right or normal to me AT ALL. I am extremely uncomfortable with the entire situation from every conceivable angle. 99% of me wants no part in any of this 2 car business whatsoever but there’s 1% of me who agrees with Blake that maybe in the summer if he’s at work, it’s hot as fuck outside and we’re all stuck inside that me or Madison could drive us all to the beach. But then there’s the realistic side of me who knows that isn’t going to happen and I can’t afford for it to happen anyway. I can’t afford gas, I can’t afford parking, I have no way of increasing my income and I’m stretched as thin as possible.  I see no other practical application for this car involving me. Explain to me why I’m supposed to be excited about this again? Because clearly I’m missing it.

And I also realize that probably every single one of you reading this is thinking I’ve lost my mind and I’m making a big deal over nothing and that I should be happy I have a car and I agree with you! You’re also probably thinking “Saint Blake” thoughts. This is not particularly rational but if you know me at ALL you know that I am NOT A RATIONAL PERSON and I don’t do well with change. We got a dishwasher last month and every single time I go into the kitchen and it’s running and I can’t get a fork or I have to interact with it, I think “who are we?” I don’t even know how to use it, haven’t even looked at the buttons, I want no part in it. It’s witchcraft. I’m getting better at ignoring its existence though, just as I’m sure I’ll eventually get better at ignoring Blake’s existence the less he considers me until we die.

Now I’ve been interrupted by a work meeting, kids coming home and Blake finishing work so there’s no way I can finish this post properly. I’m going to tell Blake that we can keep things as they are with his new toy, but I’m just gonna be sad about it and disappointed in him for a little while. This post may also need to be a two-parter, I don’t know. I don’t know if I’m any better off now than before I started writing this.

PS. Our driveway won’t even hold 2 cars and there’s not a chance in hell I’m shoveling the driveway. Thought I’d throw that out there also.

May 6, 2014

Sunny Versus the Volcano

So as I’ve mentioned before, I hate smoking cannabis and I can’t eat it. That leaves vaporizing. For those who have no idea what that is, vaporizing is where you have a device that heats up finely ground weed, which I *think* makes everything good in the weed (cannabinoids) evaporate (?) and it creates vapor that you inhale the way you would smoke but it’s a million times better for your lungs than smoking and you theoretically use less cannabis with a vaporizer than smoking it and definitely a lot less than eating.

There are all kinds of vaporizers on the market but they basically fall into two categories: personal and tabletop. A personal vaporizer is small, usually discreet and portable for medicating on the go; with these you use the draw of your own breath to inhale the vapor and they are powered by batteries. A tabletop vaporizer is exactly what it sounds like, it plugs into the wall, is usually about the size of a teakettle and some of them have a long hose (called a whip) where you again, use your own breath to draw the vapor out of the machine while others have fans built into them, shooting the vapor upwards and into plastic bags with special ends on them so the vapor doesn’t leak out and with these you “sip” the vapor out of the bag.

In the summer my friend lent me the tabletop kind with the whip and it didn’t do anything for me. Literally. I used it and nothing happened. A person I was with used it and got high as fuck on like, NOTHING, but that person is a lightweight so I figured I just didn’t use it enough or properly and I didn’t, at the time, want to use a gadget to medicate anyway so I gave it back to my friend. (And they told me before they lent it to me that “it’s not a very good one” so I figured it was the machine, not me.)

Then I became legal and since I was legal, I wanted to be able to medicate out in the world and I didn’t know how to roll a joint. That’s pretty much the end and short of it. Plus, better for your lungs, less weed etc. So I ask Blake for a Magic Flight Launch Box for Christmas as my main gift because I figured if it had its own really popular subreddit, it must be good*. He obliges and gives it to me early because I wanted to practice with it before we had to go to Blake’s work Christmas party. As I’ve explained before it didn’t work for me and yes I was using it correctly. I ended up giving it t0 my friend because it was useless to me.

At this point I figure it’s gotta be me so I start googling for reasons why nothing would happen and asking around and suuuuper long story short it IS me AND it’s the device, my tolerance is just too high for a personal vaporizer to be effective to me in any way, it doesn’t produce enough vapor in a short enough amount of time to be beneficial just due to its size.

Everyone I tell about this flat out does not believe me and tells me I have to try a Volcano. The Volcano, as my friend Steph put it, is the Cadillac of all vaporizers. It’s a tabletop unit that uses the bags and it’s $700 USD + shipping + customs & duty fees. It’s a pricey device. It’s not like I can just buy one and if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work, oh well, like with the Magic Flight, which was pretty inexpensive as far as vaporizers go.

One day I was on Reddit, looking at r/trees as I often do and someone mentioned this place in Toronto called Vapor Central which was “a good place to warm up” according to the poster. So I google and go to the site and it’s a “vapor lounge” (and yes I know the entirety of this post may be a repeat for some people, this is gonna be the last time I go through all the backstory) and at this vapor lounge, you pay a $5 day fee and with that fee you are allowed to use their Volcanoes and bongs and they also sell candy and pop. I tell Blake about it and all winter it ends up being one of those “meant to do” things that never happened.

Then my friend Steph comes to town and by “town” I mean Toronto (this time, “town” can literally mean the town I live in or it could mean Barrie, which is biggest city close to us or it can mean Toronto) and we hadn’t seen each other in a really long time so we wanted to get together. I don’t know Toronto AT ALL and wouldn’t have even known where to begin, but I floated Vapor Central as an idea, which she was down for and I blogged about that experience HERE.

I thought Vapor Central was pretty cool but didn’t feel I got to really try out the Volcano fairly because I was sharing with Steph so it was hard to gauge how much I was actually inhaling and because we were being social and sharing and stuff it was harder to tell if I was still medicated from before leaving the house or just in a good mood and how much I was actually getting. I did feel like pizza afterward so it did work to some degree but I was not the “high as fuck” I was promised by pretty much everyone.

Blake said that we should go back for an afternoon so I could use the Volcano to medicate and stay medicated as I would at home with my bong and out in the world with joints and if the Volcano was a viable option, he’d get me one, figuring it would pay for itself over time in how much we’d be saving on weed.

So Sunday we packed up our shit with the intention of going there and staying there as long as basically I could stand being there, and using the Volcano as I think I would use it at home. I brought my laptop, which only has a battery life of about 2 hours and it’s not worth it to get a new battery because the laptop will die long before any new battery would anyway, so I was a little concerned with what I was going to do to keep myself entertained while we were down there. I also had my phone, which we were going to use as a hotspot; the iPad and two notebooks, my working notebook and a new “all subject” one for more longform writing. At the last minute I decided to bring my laptop’s power cord even though I was sure there was no free outlet at the table I was hoping to get.

The drive down there was pretty uneventful and we parked at the same P parking lot as we did last time, just down the street from the lounge, but once we were parked and I had my bag in my lap ready to get out of the car, I started having a panic attack. It basically boiled down to feeling judged and not good enough to be at the vapor lounge because we’re not from there and we’re not regulars and we’re literally using them so we never have to go there again. Whatever, I took half of an olanzapine and two Ativan and after a while I felt okay and we walked to Vapor Central.

We get there and it’s on the 2nd floor of a storefront so we go up the stairs and immediately at the top of the stairs is a counter with a turnstile where you pay your day fee and go in. Blake went in first because I make him go in first everywhere (which makes him feel like people think he’s the rudest man on Earth but it’s either that or literally never go anywhere) and he pointed out that not only was the table I wanted free, but it had an open outlet that no one would probably notice if I plugged my laptop into. We pay our fees, claim our table and Blake goes to the back to get me a Volcano bag (you have to leave your driver’s licence with them so you’ll bring it back) and a Diet Coke. He returns with both AND Oreos, which have been my main sustenance lately. He shows me again how to use the Volcano (once the temperature is set, which it already was, it’s 2 buttons) and then he leaves to get a coffee next door at Starbucks.

We ended up being there for about 4 & a half hours and during that time I inhaled 8-10 Volcano bags and I got medicated enough to think trying both chicken shawarma and chicken souvlaki on a pita was a good idea (only liked the souvlaki but once it got messy I handed it off to Blake), so YAY TRYING NEW THINGS! ESPECIALLY FOOD! (That’s due to the strain though.) The problem is, it took me quite a while to get there. I’m a terrible scientist but I vaped to the same point I would have gotten with one bowl of my bong only it took me a long time to get there (hours) and the bong would have taken 4 minutes (I’ve timed it). That got me to the point of appetite stimulation, so that’s when I ate and then if I were at home, I would have smoked shortly after eating, if not immediately after, because if I don’t I’ll get sick (if I’m not already), so that’s what I did with the Volcano only the Volcano was ineffective for after meal use because it just takes too damn long. I was starting to feel sick from eating and the Volcano wasn’t really making me feel better fast enough that I got so annoyed with it that I figured I could sit at Vapor Central and hit the Volcano for 2 more hours and hope it worked or we could drive 2 hours home where I could use my bong and feel immediately better guaranteed. So we packed up and left.

I often feel sick first thing in the morning, which is why I get up so early before work, so I can medicate to be able to work but be clear-headed by the time it’s time for cognitive function. The Volcano would never work for that. I can’t get up THAT early for work to do nothing but sit there and suck a bag. I already suspected the first time we went to Vapor Central that medicating and staying medicated with the Volcano would be a full-time job and I’m only more convinced of that now. And yeah, I was using it correctly. Kinda hard to fuck it up. If anything, I was dumping out vaped bud that was still useable and overdoing it because I wanted every bag I inhaled to have visible vapor in it to be SURE I was doing it right.

I don’t think this is just tolerance though, I think maybe there’s something to vaping itself that just doesn’t jive with my system the way eating it doesn’t. Like maybe not all of the cannabinoids are released through vaping and it just so happens to be one of the ones that doesn’t that helps me. Who knows? Unfortunately there’s not a ton of actual science out there about this stuff, or at least not that I’ve ever been able to find. Just anecdotal evidence that some people can’t eat it and people online saying that personal vaporizers don’t work on them, but admitting that it could be a tolerance thing. Oh well.

 So that’s it. Volcano: case closed.

TL;DR Sunny is a cyborg.

(*this is dozy logic. Do not use this logic for anything.)

PS. In case you missed it other places, here’s me on Sunday trying desperately to get stoned at Vapor Central:

And here’s me on my very first legal 4/20:

Real post later…

Check this shit out:
271 Years Before Pantone, an Artist Mixed and Described Every Color Imaginable in an 800-Page Book

The scope of this is just mindblowing to me both to look at AND to do!!!

Totally NOT the same types of things but sort of reminds me of Henry Darger in the obsessiveness that had to be involved with creating something like this.

Anyway, thought I’d give this its own post so it doesn’t get lost in the middle of a 3000 word blog post…

Posted at 10:02 am in: Art , artists , Misc.
May 3, 2014

“You are capable of tremendous creativity.”

Blake fucking ditched me today for a hot tub!

He worked in the city all week this week which meant he didn’t get home before 8pm ALL week and I go to bed at 8:30 or 9pm.

Then last night? Bachelor party for a guy at work.

Now this morning he tells me “oh by the way, today is Bare Oaks‘ day of helping [or whatever the fuck it’s called], I totally forgot…” and what that is, is you go to Bare Oaks, which is a naturalist park, to help them prepare for the season. Last year we went there and painted deck chairs. Nekkid. But it was like, 20 degrees C and Blake got sunburnt. Today it’s 10 degrees and rainy out so everyone’s going to be clothed and it’s going to suck but Blake’s like “it’s part of the community…” and I get that, I do, so I was like, FINE, whatever.

So then he gets his shit ready and he stands in the doorway of my office and then he just couldn’t contain his excitement over Bare Oaks’ hot tub any longer and voiced it and I’m like, “NOW IT ALL COMES OUT! YOU’RE DITCHING ME FOR A FUCKING HOT TUB!!!” He’s like, “yes, yes I am…”

Since Bare Oaks is near Stouffville and next weekend is Mother’s Day and we would have been going there anyway to get Stouffville Pizza because it’s the best pizza on Earth, I asked Blake if he would pick me up a pie both to save us a trip and because fucker’s ditching me on my hardest day of the week where I need like, hours of mental preparation to be able to psychologically handle my job for 9 hours straight so he can buy me dinner.

Speaking of dinner…

Do you believe in fortune cookies? Because I totally do. I believe that they are little prophecies or messages from the universe that you’re meant to get and I save every single one I get. They’re all over my journals and notebooks because a fortune is a little smaller width-wise than a piece of tape so they’re easy to preserve and I know it’s kooky but they’re just like…sacred to me. Fortune cookies as a taste, are actually my favourite cookies too, so bonus.

I got that one last week and it was exactly what I needed to hear. When I opened it I actually cried and I like it so much that I’m considering it as a candidate for my next tattoo.

That said, I’m actively giving up on poetry. I wrote one really shitty stupid poem and realized that I am just way too long-winded and literal for poetry. So much poetry like, actively angers me because…okay so Blake explained to me about this superhero whose name might have been Silver Surfer? Anyway, this character goes super fast, like the Flash, only apparently much cooler because I think it’s Marvel and not DC or whatnot. Blake said that this character was a dick all the time, he was just constantly angry, and in one comic he explained it like…y’know when someone’s going super slow at the ATM, like painfully slow and you get mad and you’re just like “jesus christ, what are you trying to do, renew your mortgage?” Well for that character, the whole world is that slow and after a lifetime of that, you’re going to be an asshole. That’s me and poetry. Poetry is painfully slow to me. You can’t just read it and immediately know what the fuck the poet is talking about. You have to analyze it and consider every word and that is slow. I don’t have the patience for that shit! Also when I’ve asked people to explain certain things to me, they haven’t had an answer so I kinda think poetry might be a little bit of bullshit where you just make up the rules as you go along and if you do it in a way no one else has ever done it before then you’re a genius. Which is fine (and can be applied to most things I suppose), but not my thing. I don’t need to be a genius. BUT! Do keep in mind that I said I am ACTIVELY giving up on poetry, if one passively slips out by accident, then hooray for humanity, I guess.

What I have been doing though is writing the world’s most terrible short story and guess what, though? I FUCKING *FINISHED* IT! I, Sarah Danielle Crittenden, on Thursday, May 1st, 2014 finished something for the first time in my entire 35 years so far on this planet. It’s weird, I never really considered the short story as anything that I’d ever be interested in. I’ve never heard of any writers famous for short stories – I’m sure some exist – and “The Yellow Wallpaper” is probably literally the only short story I’ve ever read. A long time ago I asked Blake how long a short story had to be and he said something like, “I dunno, shorter than a novella…? There are no set rules.” (Answers like this annoy the shit out of me. I like specifics, which is part of the issue with poetry, but whatever.) The answer was so sort of…not “dismissive”, but I guess sort of off the cuff maybe, that in my head I just kinda moved onto the next topic and put the idea away as something not for me.

But then three things happened.

1. I subscribe to a t-shirt website’s newsletter and every day they send out an e-mail about a t-shirt on special or a t-shirt battle and 98% of the time I don’t even open these e-mails, I just read the bit of subject line my e-mail allows for, select and delete. Well, a few weeks ago they sent out an e-mail where the t-shirt was called one thing but in my head when I read it, it sounded like another thing and that sparked a TERRIBLE creative idea (I cannot stress enough what an absolute stinker this is) that I didn’t know what to do with.

2. I started reading more about Kerouac and how people thought it was a big deal that he’d written a million words by X amount of time or whatever, so I was like, “hmmmmm, I wonder how many words I’ve written just in blog posts alone?” just out of curiosity. So I counted. I’ve posted 5,779 blog posts on Live Journal and my average blog post is 2000 words. That’s 11,558,000 words.  I feel like all of those words were wasted and that number really bothers/ed me.

3. I realized that a lot of my blog posts are between 3,000-6,000 words and that’s gotta be short story territory.

I decided to put #1 + #3 together to alleviate #2 and the next thing I knew, I had a complete 6,086 word story sitting in front of me. And now I have no idea what to do with it. I mean, I am fucking RELIEVED to know that I am capable of finishing something. I know one short story is not a big deal to most people but considering the winter I’ve had and hell, the lifetime I’ve had, this is like a single, bright green sprout on a scorched landscape and with the 46 *other* writing ideas I’ve come up with in the last few weeks, that sprout could grow to be a mighty beanstalk and the giants are waking up.

My stinker story needs some tweaking and polishing. My narrator is supposed to be 14 years old but Blake says she doesn’t sound 14. He’s literally the only person who’s read it though so I don’t know if that’s just his opinion or if it’s true and I need to tweak it that deeply. I’m terrified to show anyone else but at the same time, as soon as I was done, my first instinct was to turn it into a free PDF for EVERYONE to read, for free, but for fuck’s sake I gotta quit doing that man. At this point in my life, there is zero benefit to me doing shit like that. If this turns out to not be as terrible as I think it is, maybe I’ll try and get it published. Where, I have no fucking clue and I’m probably just talking out of my ass and I’ll just post it here for free in the end anyway, but right now I feel like this thing is so fragile that I only feel like I can trust a few people with it and unfortunately, those people are busy and probably don’t have time to read 9 pages of anything so I don’t want to bother them. I sent it to someone who is IN the story as herself for her approval and even she hasn’t read the whole thing yet and that’s driving me crazy because I don’t want to release it outside of this house to anyone without her permission. I will because I can’t sit on this for much longer but I don’t want to.

Anyway, I have to start work in 2 hours so I’m going to medicate and make myself a bagel sandwich. Cya on Instagram and Twitter! @SunnyCrittenden!