Thighs Wide Shut

I decided to rent a Bixi Bike Share to pedal down to Cherry Beach and watch the sunrise. It seemed like a good idea; spring is here, the weather is tolerable, I don’t really sleep at night so it wasn’t like I had to get up early. I hadn’t been on a bike for at least a year, so for the first ten minutes, I felt like I was on top of the world, thinking happy thoughts, even considering buying a bike of my own. These kind of thoughts are best left to simmer, because about twenty minutes in I couldn’t feel my ass and was congratulating myself on simply renting, and not buying the infernal contraption. I’m going to feel the burn tomorrow. Hell, I already feel it. Still, watching the sun rise and having the beach all to myself was #worthit.

Taste the Rainbow

Last week, Starbucks debuted a limited edition drink called the Unicorn Frappucino. The name alone evoked magic and cotton candy, which sounds interesting on paper, but turned out to be all sorts of extra. I’ve downed my fair share of bubble teas that have run the gamut of colours, but even this was just a little much too much.

The Unicorn Frappucino (April 18-23, 2017, RIP) was a blended drink that was created to dazzle the eye.  It had a pink, sparkly, mango-flavoured cream base, was laced with a “pleasantly sour” blue ripple and, as a final flourish, topped with whipped cream and a light dusting of pink “fairy dust.” In other words, it looked like someone took major elements of gay pride, put it in a blender, poured it in a venti cup and topped it with diabetes. Read More »

Addicted to Life

Death as a concept was introduced by a slightly batty friend of my parents who had been asked to babysit. I don’t remember all the details, I just remember her earnest explanation of war and how everyone was eventually going to kick the bucket. I wasn’t ready. (I’m still not ready.) My parents came home to a five-year-old wailing her head off. I don’t want you to die! They never asked her to babysit again.

Realizing no one lives forever was my version of being told Santa Claus wasn’t real. Now that I knew life was finite, I dedicated the rest of my life to finding ways to prolong my time on earth without adding unnecessary risks.  Ha! I wish. I don’t smoke and I drink very little, but my true vices are sugar and salt. Both of these are just as likely to steer me on my way to kingdom come while a dozen nutritionists look on in horror, but what a way to go, eh?

Two weeks ago, Siquijor went from a quiet, untouched paradise to a scary, dangerous place. Two promising young women were cut down in the prime of their lives, all because a crazy bloke was running around tripping balls, leaving devastation in his wake. It hit very close to home, because this is the sort of thing that is only supposed to occur in a gritty metropolis, not a magical, carefree island like Siquijor. Most of the time we shrug off these scenarios, believing they will never happen to us or anyone we know.  Then tragedy strikes and it suddenly feels like we’re all just waiting for a piano to fall on our heads.

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Everything Must Go

Toronto’s flagship HMV closed its doors today with the fire sale to end all fire sales. I went, I saw, I learned so much.

One – they can mark down all the DVDs and Blu-rays in the world,  6 for $9 still isn’t enough incentive to make people want to buy all the Twilight movies that miraculously escaped the incinerator that should’ve been set up to rid the world of that infamy. It did make me stop and think maybe my Dad… nope. I already wasted enough time and energy reading the books (cringe) and watching the first two movies (cringe) in theatres (cringe). Enabling my father will not be another sin I need to take with me to confession.

Two – the same can be said about Glee. The combined allure of singing adolescents and bargain basement pricing just isn’t  good enough.

Three – I am apparently unable to ignore a 90% discount on Star Wars bobbleheads, even if it’s a two-fer on characters I didn’t and still don’t give a crap about, but hey it’s $3.49, Christmas is inevitable, maybe I can fob Finn and Kylo Ren off on someone who isn’t my husband  – who is likely to  judge me thirty ways to Sunday for giving in to the Force of this discount.

Four – the last Funko Pop! figures to go at a fire sale wil be: Castiel from Supernatural, Jamie Lannister from Game of Thrones and Killer Croc from Suicide Squad. In other words, “Um, who?”, “Oh alright, fine”, and “I already have a Chewbacca bathrobe from HMV that the hubs is never going to wear, let me walk away with what’s left of my dignity.”

Five – does anyone want a Chewbacca bathrobe? Never used. Let’s talk.

Asgardians of the Galaxy

The new teaser for Thor: Ragnarok is out, and it seems to have taken a page out of the GOtG playbook. More colour, yay! More humour, yay! More friends from work, yay!

The Thor movies have never really been at the top of my Marvel fave list, but this outing by Taika Waititi just may change things, because they had the audacity and sheer genius to cast Cate Blanchett as a badass Hela, Goddess of the Underworld and equip her with multiple antlers. This was a no-brainer – Cate Blanchett is awesome when she plays queens. She was Elizabeth I. She was Galadriel, Elven Queen, she of the pointy ears who brings the light. And now, queen of the underworld + major smokey eye + Mjolnir- destroying, fighting-in-insanely-horned-helmet capabilities? Go ahead and #takemymoney Marvel, you glorious sons of bitches.

PS: I used the version where Batfleck reacts to Ragnarok, because the mash-up works even better than the standalone teaser.

PPS: Major points for using a Led Zeppelin single. I’d never heard of it before, but it fits the mood to a T.

United We Fall

A routine exercise in booting people off an overbooked flight in an attempt to have standby staff flown to Louisiana turned into a farce of major proportions, when one guy decided to do a Rosa Parks and stand up, or in this case, sit down, for his rights. He refused to move, so United Airlines could have seats for staff that needed to fly to Louisiana, likely a last-minute reassignment for them to crew another plane.

I suppose United’s decision to do this made sense to them in a twisted sort of way: they owned the plane, it was their crew, they could do what they wanted provided they gave the affected passengers compensation and an alternate trip back. Their house, their rules. It’s like a customer refusing to leave a restaurant even after being offered a free meal and fare for a cab ride home despite the repeated requests of its owner. Is the owner supposed to just throw his hands up in the air and let the customer have his way, or does he sic law enforcement on the offending party instead?

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This Broke My Heart Today

A boy wakes up inside a body that doesn’t belong to him. More importantly, the body he wakes up in is female. The first thing he does is feel up the boobs he knows do not belong to him, because of course.

A girl is smothered by the claustrophobia of  living in a small town where everyone knows each other and there is nowhere to escape to except two small pubs; she decides she would rather be a gorgeous teen boy who lives in Tokyo because presumably, being a boy would make her life so much easier. It’s a funny, spot-on illustration of the perils of adolescence. That kind of understanding of the frustration and the confusion that comes with growing up combined with the ability to bring it to vivid life is rare and should be recognized as often as is possible.

What is it about the Japanese and their ability to wring every last bit of emotion from our unwilling, jaded selves? There’s something about seeing the kind of love, however intangible, that makes you believe in soulmates. There’s something wistful, something hopeful about watching a young man allowing himself to live in suspended, baffled animation, not knowing exactly what he wants and simultaneously knowing exactly what it is, and being unwilling to settle for anything less, even if it takes years. He unashamedly embraces the quest to find the woman of his dreams.  That’s the sort of devotion, the sort of loyalty that a girl would kill for.

To call Your Name (Kimi no Na Wa) a coming of age romance is to undersell it. It’s about so much more than young love.  This is a movie that tries to capture the feeling of waking up in a body you don’t recognize; the feeling of simultaneous dread and wonder at a comet slashing its way through the sky; the feeling of  of waking up after a dream, desperately clutching at threads of memory that are blown away just beyond one’s reach; the longing for foresight instead of hindsight and the powerful drive to avoid disaster and ultimately, the realization that if one tries hard enough, sometimes things just fall into place if they really are meant to be. It’s a lot for a movie to take on. Your Name tries, and, for the most part, succeeds beautifully. Props to Makoto Shinkai, who, through the power of this movie – which happens to be Japan’s biggest hit of 2016 -has  been anointed as the next Hayao Miyazaki; that is, the next great anime master storyteller.