The Past.

What does the past do for us? What does it remind us of? Is it healthy at all to think about the past? Wish it were different? Speak to it as if it happened just a few hours ago? Think about possible other outcomes? Remember the day in detail, because you’ve written about it back then, so you can read the powerful words that were once as fresh as a wound?

The past… it’s one of the most powerful teachers, tormentors, reminders, heart breakers, that we have. All we know is our past. It’s the easiest thing we can connect our present to. It’s the easiest thing to connect our possible futures with. It’s what we fall back on. It’s the crutch that helps heal our broken legs, until we trip over it. It’s the bulk of our lives, and where we come from, and in our own minds, predicts where we’re going to go from here.

Where do we go from here?

Do we continue thinking about what it is that made us angry years ago, a year and a half ago, nineteen years ago, and hang on for dear life as the present melts away, falling in streaming droplets down the windowpanes of our lives? Do we wipe it all away and pretend it never happened? If the latter is ‘better’, how? How can we do that? How can we ignore the past, or else keep it away wrapped up in a sealed box, only to be looked at very occasionally, and only when we really really really need it? How come in the technology age, the past keeps coming back to hurt, haunt and maim us with subtle reminders, or subtle ways we can glimpse at it and remember what it was like when the past was ours and the past was our present?

The past is perplexing to me. I can scarcely move past it, though I am trying constantly to do so. I can scarcely say goodbye to it when I know I should, and I want to, but at the same time I know I would miss little fragments of it if they were to suddenly blow away in the wind like dandelion seeds. I can’t forgive it, though I can look at it with eyes that are blase and meandering and nonplussed. And yet, sometimes my thoughts are needle-pointed with anger and hatred and regret, just by glancing back at something that was once a part of my life and now, is not.

In those moments, I write. I write to make pilgrimages to people and places and events that happened and that cease to happen as I am safely away from it all and gratefully airlifted out. I write because it makes me feel better to write something that someone might read and understand, and it might make them feel like shit about themselves, as it should. I can’t exact revenge. I can’t tell someone to their face how I feel when those things have occurred in the past. So writing is all I have. It’s the only way I can express to the world, to myself, the ways in which I’ve been hurt and organize them like neat little file folders in a drawer.

The past should be legible. The past should make sense. And only in hindsight can it be that way.

Shame On You.

When you confront me, I never know what to say. I never have. Ever since that devastating, ghastly high five, my world with you – rather, ‘our’ world, if there ever was an ‘our’ – was full of awkward silences, covered up with un-awkward loveliness. I loved our loveliness. I loved you. I believed so much in what was ‘ours’. So, so, much. When I was 19 and stupid and I had no idea that was was ours meant nothing. It meant nothing to you, and in retrospect, it meant nothing – nothing – to me either.

Shame on you.

Shame on you for making the disgusting, idiotic assumption from somewhere (three guesses where) that I would sit here pining after you, you, who I have not even been in the same ROOM with, since 2010. Shame on you for even saying something so ludicrously mean and nasty not for any other reason except to hurt me and make me feel like an idiot for being nice.

I have news for you: there, is, no, shame, in, being, nice. I am not, nor have I ever been ashamed of being nice. I have absolutely no regrets about doing everything in my power to make you happy even though there was no ‘ours’ and I was trying to keep something alive that had never even really blossomed.

Shame on you.

Shame on you for apologizing for hurting me when you didn’t mean it, because you only continued your apology by throwing something else mean like mud in my ugly face. Shame on you for knowing that I was harmless, but making me feel like I was doing something harmful regardless of the circumstances. Shame on you for being stuck in the past even more than I was, am, or ever will be just because the past feeds your vapid ego. Shame on you for thinking you’re better, hotter, sexier, smarter, and for certain – more talented than you actually are. Shame on you for every nice thing you ever did for me, for that time you groped me in front of my apartment building well after you dumped me with that fucking high five, shame on you for using me to make yourself feel attractive and wanted when in reality, you’re neither of those things regardless of what’s happened to you in your life. You never will be. Never.

Shame on you for knowing – not thinking, knowing – that from the very moment you raised your palm to me on that fateful snowy sunny day in March, all the horrible things and feelings that were crawling in and around my heart like slimy, ugly worms and never talking with me about them, and just letting me suffer when you knew I was 19 and suffering so much, I was eating myself out of house and home and I was lying in bed all day, not wanting to go out or spend time with my friends. Shame on you for knowing this but being extra, extra nice to my best friends, to the point where you decided to keep them and not me – for deciding to keep my sister, and not me. Shame on you for doing this just to try and hurt me even more, because you pretend to be some nice, average joe nerdy nice guy with a talent for cinema but really you’re the most astonishingly icky, awful, evil person who took advantage of a nice girl you knew was in love with you, and you decided to jut keep going with it.

Shame on you.

Shame on you for knowing that since the last time I saw you and well before that, I have attempted to do everything I possibly ever could just to move past what you did to me, and I have done those things, and you refuse to be proud of me or acknowledge that my heart isn’t empty anymore – I found love before, I have love now, and I believe in the ability to find and embrace love in my future no matter what that looks like or who it’s with. Shame on you for ignoring that, looking past all that I’ve done with my life, and instead focusing on the shy pathetic loser who was an empty shell of a human being – because that is the weak, sad, fat, self-conscious feeble person that fell in love with you, and that was the me you liked, because that was the version of me who thought you were better than her.

And you know what? Shame on you for trying so hard to put me in my place and make me feel small again when you can’t. Because now, I have realized that I’m bigger and bolder and better than you. And I always will be.


He was old enough to remember a time without the internet, although his time without such luxuries was longer than others’. He was confined, for five years. He deserved to be. He did something society regarded as abhorrent. He was a disgusting psychotic creep who didn’t deserve anything good – all the love and luxuries associated with one’s early twenties were to be stripped away. They cast stones. He wasn’t able to live online when the rest of the world had just started living online.

Here he is now, crawling his way back from solitude followed by aimless wandering, followed by more solitude. He’s a villain, says everyone. Everyone, except me, except the ‘other’ girl. He’s a villain for something he did in the past, that I believe he will never do again. He needs to control himself. He’s controlling himself. I beam at how far he’s come, even since April when I met him in the first place. He has everything going for him. I’m glad he didn’t succumb to himself. I’m glad he was saved. What I want is for the rest of the world to be glad for him, too. I want the world to see what I see. The world will never see what I see. I want to apologize to him for how terrible the world can be, how unforgiving, how one-dimensional and misunderstanding.


He is old enough to well-remember a world when there was scarcely even cell phones. He embodied that world with the same woman, the same woman he’s woken up with every day for the past fifteen years. He is low-key, worked a decent job or two, done his best to be a common-law boyfriend, done his best to handle his drinking, done his best to repair his life, whatever that means.

And yet.

And yet, he is a liar. He has taken an innocent, seemingly naive, too-kind smart, bright young woman under his wing and convinced her she is loved. He is not capable of love. He is not capable of being with only her. He is not capable of understanding everything he’s doing wrong. He is not capable of brushing his teeth or being good to someone who has done nothing but been good and understanding to him when very few other people would be.

He has cheated, lied, two-timed, been vague about the past when he could have been honest and upfront and saved a girl who cares about him (for some reason) large full bags of hurt. Easily. And yet, he continues to lie and cheat and act like an infiltrating monster.


So who is the monster? And who is the good person? Is the monster the man who society condemns as such, or is the monster the person who is allowed to live his life right and fully, but shouldn’t because of how he treats those who would give anything for them?

The Best Moments of Summer 2014.

The first date.

Sometimes the best dates are the ones you don’t know are dates; there’s this element of unsuspected surprise; of wondering how someone feels and then finding out they feel the exact same way as you do; of seeing a friend you haven’t seen in a while transform, in just a few short hours, into someone you could fall in love with; of sitting by the water with someone, the quiet happening, and then having that person gently touch your chin and bring their mouth to yours and in that moment, feeling like all your dreams have come true. And everything afterwards was a whirlwind of swirling shooting stars – an utter late 20s poor student teacher fairy tale.

Arcade Fire, Squamish Festival

In the form of one outdoor dream concert, everything I thought I knew about live music was forever changed. The Arcade Fire show… what’s there to say about it? I was in the front, for one. And I could feel all the epic coming at me, surging through my bloodstream quickly, so much so it was almost difficult to come down from the excitement I felt from the first note to the confetti-spewing finale. It wasn’t just the music, though the music was the catalyst for the mayhem and madness of the orchestral performance art craziness that I witnessed in just over 90 minutes that night. It was the multiple drummers, it was Regine Chassagne standing on a table top doing oddball poses in a shiny mask, it was Win Butler doing a warrior stance on a podium at the front of the stage sweating through his stark-white jacket as if he was fighting some battle of intensity, cementing him as one of the best frontmen in indie rock n’ roll, it was the ‘greatest hits’ set list and the weird masked figures ‘posing’ as the band and book-ending the entire show. I’ll never forget that show. I don’t know how many other concerts could ever, ever feel that way.

Josh Ritter at the Commodore Ballroom

I hadn’t been to the Commodore Ballroom since that magical Ryan Adams & the Cardinals night back in 2007, and so I was already prepared to re-live rosy memories of past concerts on this night. What happened instead was my thorough enjoyment of my second Josh Ritter show as Ritter himself burst with quirky energetic joy, playing his way through all eras of his best songs. I was front and centre, my hands and glass of beer actually sitting on the stage as I sang along almost-tearfully to “The Temptation of Adam”. It was so hot in Vancouver that weekend. This was the hottest night of all.

Bag Stands at Pemberton Festival

The best part of Pemberton Festival wasn’t the music and it certainly wasn’t the two 3 km trips we had to make from our cars to our campsite with all of our flats of PBR and other camping equipment. The best part was bonding with my best festival friends and their friends, the five of us passing around a bag of wine and then eating re-hydrated peanut fried rice from a bag. There was hangovers and perogies and headbanging and massive consumption of alcohol. It was one of the most fun weekends I had all summer.

Seattle With Mom

Seattle is a magical place with delicious food and amazing beer and pretty scenery. I’m a huge fan. It’s probably one of my favourite cities on earth, and it’s always a pleasure to drive down there for one reason or another. On this particular occasion I took my mother for the first time and the two of us had a really nice time down by the waterfront, eating (AMAZING!!!) pot pie and drinking craft beer, and doing our favourite American things. I really love spending time with my mom, especially when it involves one or both of us doing things for the very first time.

Jealous, Happiness for Others, and the Whole Damn Thing.

I will admit fully that sometimes I’m jealous of others’ successes and others’ achievements. I am jealous of others’ happinesses, and it has caused me to be and feel negativity that I questioned for my own self why and how I felt this way. In doing so, I noticed that it was only certain people for whom I was incapable of feeling happiness. And this led me to ask myself: Why do these particular relationships happen to cause me this type of jealousy and anger? In turn, do my actions instill jealousy and anger into these other people as well? With one or two in particular the answer was yes. Jealous was reciprocal with people who I feel set up to ‘compete’ with for some reason. And this opens up another can: Where does that competitive relationship happen and why? And what can I do to stop it before the daggers in my green-eyed-monster eyes lodge themselves unsuspectingly into someone’s heart causing irreparable damage?

I was doing some reading on this and found some truly moving and interesting combative ways to  not allow jealousy and bad feelings get the better of your relationships. I questioned whether I was doing this for me or for other people. I thought about television shows where the protagonist with whom we are supposed to sympathize yelling, “Why can’t you just be happy for me?!” and place myself into that role. Why not? Why can’t certain others be happy for me? Why can’t I be happy for others?

All I can do is promise myself to remember bad feelings and do my best to avoid them solely based on how it feels to be on the other side of them. But what can I do for other people? Can I demand to be heard? Can I demand to not be a target for their anger? No. But what I can say is this:

I have been through a lot in my life that has, at times, rendered me to be a nasty and unforgiving person. And this is no fault of the targets of my anger but rather people who can no longer hear my screams for one reason or another. That is wrong. But it is equally wrong to deny me of sharing in my happiness just because of petty jealousies of the past. Reconciliation begins not with getting ‘revenge’ but rather, rebuilding bridges. Rebuilding is indicated by one person sharing in another’s happiness as a foundation for this renewed relationship. That’s what I want and there is an opportunity for that now which, it is apparent, may soon pass. And so, what are you waiting for? Please share in my happiness. It is welcomed. There is beauty in that act. Even if you somehow fail to see it right now.

Twenty Facts About Me.

Remember when stating 25 random facts about yourself in the “Notes” section of your Facebook page (which ceases pretty much, to be used at all in this day and age – all of 4-5 years later)? I do. And I’m going to retro-throwback that as part of my blog on this sunny September day.

1. Today is the first time I’ve ever comfortably and confidently been able to call myself someone’s girlfriend without feeling as though I was making assumptions about someone else’s feelings.

2. I didn’t like the movie Frozen. I don’t understand why the internet and everyone else in the world has turned it into such a huge phenomenon. It was an average animated Disney musical at best.

3. I have a love/hate relationship with social media. On one hand, I am hopelessly addicted to Facebook, Twitter, blogging, Instagram, Snapchat, and so on and so forth and I manage active accounts on many sites. On the other hand, I see small children having dinners out with their parents and they’re staring at a screen and not paying attention to their surroundings at all; I see people at concerts documenting their entire experience through a 3-5″ screen; I see kids in high school texting each other and Facebooking each other more than they’re actually physically spending time together. It hurts me to see a generation that does not know a world without hand-held devices.

4. I make one of 2-3 variations of the same meat/vegetable combinations for dinner every single night that I cook.

5. In the past 3-4 years, I’ve grown very comfortable addressing issues that happened in my past. I realized talking about the past helps to make everything better and lighten a load that nobody needs to burden themselves with.

6. I love scalp massages. More than pretty much anything in the world.

6. I’ve never had a manicure before. I’m too ashamed of my ugly hands.

7. I sometimes feel that I constantly like people more than they like me and I’m talking about friendships as well as relationships. I always check my email half-expecting to see people who are no longer in my life coming to certain realizations and messaging me about them, and every day that doesn’t happen. At this point, I’m starting to be okay with that.

8. As horribly sexist as it is, one of the movies that sums up and reminds me of what it was like to grow up and be a teenager in the late 90s/early 00s is American Pie.

9. If I don’t have coffee in a while, I start getting excruciating headaches. Which means I have a full-fledged addiction.

10. I always liked Christina Aguilera more than Britney Spears.

11. Considering that I did an English teaching degree and an Arts undergraduate degree, I am actually quite poorly read.

12. I don’t really care about having the ‘latest’ or ‘best’ technology.

13. I’m borderline-obsessed with soup. It’s one of my favourite go-to lunches.

14. One of my favourite songs of all time is the embarrassingly cheesy “Drops of Jupiter” by Train. There’s something about it that transcends me. Of all the songs I know (and there are a lot), there’s something indescribable about it.

15. When I was a kid I used to sneak mouthfuls of whipped cream that I’d squirt into my mouth from the can when my mom wasn’t home.

16. I think the 90s episodes of The Simpsons is some of the best television ever created. I never get tired of classic Simpsons reruns.

17. One of my favourite things to do is travel to see a concert. You get the experience of a trip as icing on the cake, and an amazing show.

18. If I could abandon all logic and choose any career in the world whether or not I’m suited to or qualified for that job, I would either be a forensic investigator, a record store owner, or I would open a bar in Maui.

19. I’ve had moments where I swear I can predict the future, even though logically I’m sure that I can’t.

20. I have the most crippling fear of failure.

Five Bands I Wish Were Still Together.

The White Stripes.

How could you not witness old videos of the raw, uninhibited bluesy power of the dynamic duo of Jack and Meg White? There was something so primitive and also juvenile somehow about the mixture of guitar virtuosity and the manic screaming of Jack, alongside the simplistic two-note pounding on the skins provided by the most underrated drummer, Meg White, doing what she does best. There was magic in those two. Jack White has since been one of the most prolific and arguably modern day legends of our time with the Dead Weather, The Raconteurs, and on his own with his powerful, fantastic solo albums. But I don’t know if it gets any better than The White Stripes. I’d love to hear what these two would be capable of in this day and age.


Critically panned, most infamously and notably by everyone’s favourite pretentious music blog Pitchfork, JET certainly didn’t have the best reputation with people who ‘knew what they were talking about’. Having said that, their debut album stormed onto the charts with the sort-of one hit wonder, “Are You Gonna Be My Girl?” and instantly captivated everyone. The foot-stomping, hand-clapping, riff-heavy garage anthem still plays in bars today and there isn’t a soul who won’t get up and dance. JET were lost amongst all the other ‘The’ bands (White Stripes, Hives, Vines, Von Bondies, and so on and so forth) but these Aussies were what they were and gave what they gave; throbbing melodic garage pop with torn edges. I loved every minute of it. Fuck you too, Pitchfork.

Fruit Bats

Eclectic folk/pop outfit Fruit Bats only called it quits last year, and I can still feel the pain of the split like a fresh wound. My other other favourite Chicago-based folk band, Fruit Bats were a small and highly underrated band with lineup changes over the years but an uncompromising easy, breezy twee sound with clever songs involving losing teeth in earthquakes and taking a date to see Three Dog Night at the fairgrounds. I never had the opportunity to see Fruit Bats live, and I’ll always wonder how it would have been to sit in the audience drifting away to Eric D. Johnson telling me he’ll be the lump of sugar in my tea.

The Kinks

If only. If only the Davies’ could resolve their differences and all other problems with these garage rock Gods could be solved just so they could hit the stage one more time. Despite outlasting decades and decades however, and releasing great album after great album, changing sounds and adapting to the times and doing everything right to keep current, the fact remains that the Kinks cease to survive. And that’s a shame. I think the world needs a Kinks reunion. Irreconcilable differences between genius collaborators is a creative, professional and music fandom tragedy. I’d love to see the Kinks live once again and everyone else would, too. Everyone that is, except for Ray and Dave. Come on, guys. Patch it up.

Led Zeppelin

I’ve often said that the one concert that at this point might blow my mind the most, it would be The Rolling Stones playing anything, anywhere. I would do anything to see them. And that’s only because they’re still together, and Zeppelin are not. I cannot even imagine seeing Jimmy Page and Robert Plant together on the same stage, doing what they do, even past their prime. I was born in the wrong decade, I think to myself sometimes. And it’s only because I didn’t end up an 80lb Zeppelin groupie watching Robert Plant stagger around on stage as if he’s possessed and Jimmy Page melting off my frail drug-addled face. It’s a cruel world.