Thursday, November 26, 2009

HA HA HE HE HE HA hehehehehehe hoo hoo A HAHAHAHEHEHEHEHE Ha HA he ….he he …OK …ok ok im good…. He he he. Ok (sigh) that was that was, WOW hoo-boy… how do I explain it…? I'll try….

"What's Salvia? " My eyebrow jumped an inch and I began to sit up straight.

"Its TOTALLY legal. We bought a gram at Northern Hemp-shere for like forty bucks. Dude, we smoked a joint and we were fucked for a whole weekend! " He presented a small vial, no bigger then my pinky , from his pocket . "One hit," his voice oozes with enthusiasm " and you trip fucking balls."

"That sounds too good to be true, what's the catch?" besides the price obviously. My leather jacket moans as I slump back down. Why am I wearing my leather jacket inside ? Duh, it’s a leather jacket.

" So far, there isn't one. But I mean…anything that does THIS can't be good for you ." Yeah, that’s the same conclusion that I deduced.

"IIIII doooonnnnn't knoooowwww , it probably burns a hole in your brain. That shit can't be good for you."

"So you wanna hit?"

"Of course."

He unscrews the lid and reveals the contents. It looks like…like when I rub my hands together after a day of work and all the dirt rolls up into black strands. He takes a mouse's pinch off the very tip the earthy gunk, ever so gently places it in the bowl, and hands me the pipe. "Just take a little hit, don't haul on it."

"Nah, of course, of course." The flame hits the gunk and I commence. One second becomes two, becomes three, becomes four, five, six …If someone says don’t haul on it, what are you gonna do right ? His face starts to bloom, eyes widen, jaw sinks, astonishment ? No, not astonishment, something else… wait a minute… Where did he go ?? The shadows? The shadows ate him……

How did I get here? Im back at Futureshop. Awwww I hate this job…how did I get here?!?! What's in my hand? A peg hook? I gotta stock the rack… Something is different about this place? Where is everyone else? He..he he…hehe ha…heheheheheHAHAHAHAHAHA OH MY GOD!!!! It tickles! it tickles…My Jacket is tickling me….oh wait, wait, its just melting. Melting?!?!? In that Case…. HAHAHAHAHAHA HEHEHEHE…(etc.)

The store has become engulfed in flames that burn like feathers on your feet. Chunks from the ceiling tiles are crumbling to the ground. CRASH! CRASH! CRASH Oh, its just the windows exploding, no worries. Shelves collapse, televisions roll their eyes, a package of double, no triple A batteries begin to dance. Everywhere, the glowing orange hue of friendly flames…. Tee hee

"Kyle? Dude?"


"Dude this is the funniest thing ive ever seen. Hey , Hey Kyle!"
"I SAID, THE ROOF, THE ROOF , THE ROOF IS ON FIRE , WE DON’T NEED NO WATER LET THE MOTHERFUCKER BURN. HA! I say what what, I say groove baby groove. When I say ROOF you say BURN. ROOF…..? I said ROOF….? Huh?" ....Where am I? Oh yeah….. "Wow. That was…wow. How long was I gone?"

"About fifteen seconds. Dude, you are hilarious!"

The office is cramped with boxes and papers are strewn about the desk. Mike sits down across from me. Our eyes meet. Mike (picture Bart Simpson at thirty years old but without the slingshot) folds his hands together and plunks them onto the desk.

"Kyle. Its just not gonna work out. I have to let somebody go.."

"Wait! Your firing me?"

"Im sorry. You can finish the day or go home right now if you want. You'll get paid for the hours you…"

"Dude! ….That’s hilarious! OH my god! That’ amazing!"

" Excuse me?"

"Oh, uh, never mind. Later chief."


IF THE LINK DOESNT WORK< JUST LOOK FOR THE VIDEO TITLED "writing a letter to congress on Salvia" i HOPE YOU ENJOY.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Outside looking in...

The gristle of shoreline sand brushing against the lapping lake…A thunderous croak of withered cabin walls..My eyes peek open, and through a screen window, are greeted with the morning dance of tree branches. I can make out images in their display of criss crossing , bending and bark'ed limbs. As I wake I wonder, what is it about camping?

I hardly remember even pouring the coffee that I carry in my cup. Yellow clams polka dot the bottom of the clearest water I know of. Pebbles line the vast shoreline like beaded necklaces. My foot prints trail behind my sand tickled feet. The beach underlines the thick greens of the bush. Rock formations, with colours so unordinary, decorate the island as jewels would a crown. Boats move in harmony with the clouds across the sky. As I march with joy on my journey my mind wanders to then evening ahead. As usual there will be a fires to honour the heavens. Embers will swirl their way up the smoke. The stars will speckle the sky and give way to shooting streaks of silver. Gooey marshmallows will ooze off roasting sticks. Not even the incessant whine and itching poke of mosquitoes could possibly spoil natures comforts. There's just something about camping.

Real beauty is in natures adornment. Pink and pearl stones that drape the lips of islands The twisted pines the poke up from the land shout tales of wicked winds from momentous storms. I remember an image from my earliest child hood memories of a sun faded green canoe zipping past the window of the cabin. I can remember the sweet homely taste of hot chocolate that day. Is that why I still love a good storm?

I quite often find myself going for these walks. I never tire of navigating the island with only my curiosity. When I reach the northerly cliff and absorb the endless portrait of beauty that blankets the horizon I feel as though I can glimpse a remembrance of Eden. Suddenly, I realise that I sit like an ant perched on top of the world. I no longer see cities and roads scab the skin of the earth. I can hear the heartbeat of the waves, and the breath of the air. The farthest away a person can get outside of their I-pod. A smile surfaces.

I am reminded of a time when my roommates and I recorded ourselves jamming. We had decided to form a band and figured we were getting pretty good. Ryan, our singer, held his finger on the button and with a cue we commenced our Rocking! I remember my playing, I was in the zone. My fingers ran up and down the frets with practiced discipline. I remember my roommate, had this awe stricken look on his face and he looked at me and gave me this nod to keep going. Any way, when we played it back afterwards, it was screeching out static, and the symbols were louder then the singing. It didn’t matter that I played really well if we didn't sound good together. This goes back to my point about camping. Sometime you need to step outside and look back in, and that is why camping is so special.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Yay FUN!

"Can I climb on the monkey bars? You kids don't know who you're talkn' to." I smiled back at the all the pairs of watchfull eyes. Time to show them my amazing monkey bar agility. Sure, it has been a while since circumstances demanded that I hurl my body into a volley of acrobatics but it's just like riding a bike right? All those hours of playing spiderman as a kid are about to count for something.

"Are you Ok?" Im barely able to see with the sun glaring down at me. Several munchkin silouettes tower over me. They share giggles. I envy them. What happened to me? Im only 23. I thought it was 40 before things went down hill. I get up and brush the sand off of me. Not only have I embarassed myself in front of all these kids, but now I have to face the fact that I am much more out of shape than i thought. Amber smiles up at me from under a Dora the explorer cap. "Kyle your silly."
"Amber. I want you to promise me that you will enjoy the monkey bars while you can. Your 9 years old and you still have a long time before life sucks. So play everyday. "

Since starting this job, its been one painful realization after another. From 9 until 5 these kids are under our supervision . We keep them busy all day with dodgeball and duck duck goose. They never stop going. Where are they getting this energy from? Everynow and then they decide to gang up on me. IF anyone reading this is considering having children then let me give fair warning, they may be cute, but they are darn painful. They attack from all sides with pokes and pinches. The jump on me for piggy back rides and pull my shirt until it stretches. I usually manage to keep them away for a minute or two. It doesn't take long though, until my throat starts to burn, and my chest starts to throb. After that, I get overwhelmed in a tsunami of little devils tearing at me like a hoard of pirrahnas. If you have ever seen the Simpsons where Homer is getting pummeled with deviled eggs after all the kids chase him down, and he is to winded to fight back, that is kinda how I feel everyday I work at the playground.

At least I have fun. Nobody my age is ever interested in playing hide and go seek anymore. They just want to drink. What a long and strange process that the idea of fun gradually turns from games when we are kids to drinking when we are adults. Let me give an example of a conversation I have had at least a dozen times with at least a dozen different friends over the last year.

"Hey we should do something this weekend!"Says I.
"Yeah, we should all get together and drink at my place," says friend.
"Ok. yeah. Sure, but what do you want to do?" I reply.
"What do you mean? Were gonna Drink!"

No wonder these kids are running circles around me. They have a lot more practice at it. I remember being a kid and building snowforts to have snowball fights in. I remember riding bikes in search of adventure. I remember building spaceships out of cardboard boxes or playing in my friends treehouse. Those were amazing times. Strangely, I seem to remember those images more clearly then all my weekends during high school and onward. Somewhere in between childhood and adulthood we lose sight of what having fun really means. When I work with these kids I get reminded each day that fun means playing and laughing. Fun means games and friends. At some point , my friends and I stopped having fun and just started drinking. Actually, let me use another word; 'Partying.' From early puberty onward, it is ingrained into our heads that Partying is the greatest thing a person can hope to achieve. If a person wants to be a somebody they have to attend Parties. Well, since partying is such an important right of passage among our people then perhaps someone can please tell me what partying means? So far from what I have experienced, all it seems to mean is "everyone get obnoxiously intoxicated and dance badly!" If I have a pet peeve it is when someone shouts the word "Party!" Please, please do us all a favour and shut the hell up!

I miss having fun, REAL fun, not that imitation fun that needs to be chemically induced. I make the last loop and pull my laces tight. A few quick stretches first. It's October now, still a long way untill the summer playground. Plenty of time. This isn't so bad. The cold autumn air quickly enters and quits my lungs. Sweat starts to trickle and tickle my temple. One leg in front of the other, one two, one two. Its only a few more i pod songs and then shower time. hmmm...A thought just occured to me. Where is the nearest park with a jungle gym, i still got a few months until summer.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

ying yang

Where is this place? Oh well im sure I'll find it. I have been to Res. before, although I dont have much time to party these days. That reminds me I still have to finish a paper for thursday. Thats Ok, I can start working on it between classes tomorrow at the Argus. That way I still have time to edit it a few times tomorrow night. Ok I think this is it. Yeah thats him. Definately him. there is no mistaking that head of hair. He might actually be cute if he got cleaned up a little. I gotta clear my stuff of the seat for him.

Rain spatters over the windsheild blurring the nightlights of the city. "Lord almighty, Learn to drive!" I was not expecting this girl to have road rage. Those glasses of hers are perched on the the bridge of her nose and she scans the road like an eagle scans the water. She points with her left hand " That is the street where my Grandmother lives. She is really really religious. She is crazy strict like you wouldn't believe. One time ..." There she goes again. I haven't heard about this grandmother yet but I have been given a lot stories so far. Each new landmark or street sign is the title for another story. I wonder if she is just babbling nervously or just a really friendly motormouth. I have been reading her since I got in the car and I can tell she has been doing the same.
"So where are you from?"She asks. I'll let her take the lead, that will give me the chance to think of questions.
"Elliot Lake. It is a small town and it is full of seniors."
"Oh I have heard of Elliot Lake. Do you know .....?" I hate playing the you know so and so game especially when dealing with my home town. I suppose Have to bite the bullet. The sooner get this out of the way the sooner we can have a real conversation.

He seems quiet. This might go better if i can get him to say more than a few words at a time. Uh Oh! I hate drivers in this town. Don't they realise how stupid that kind of stuff is? What if someone gets killed. People sometimes, lord Joseph. I wanted to go to the Java hut but its packed, oh well I can cut across to memorial and go to Chapters. The sooner the better cause it would be nice to have a conversation face to face. That might get him to open up more.

Twenty minutes later and we have managed to find a coffee shop with a free table this time. Luckily we didnt get wet on the way from her car. Star bucks is crowded and murmurs with chatter. She wraps her peacoat around a chair and I sit across from her. I wonder what this girl's issues are? Everyone's got some. She pulls out a small tape recorder and places it ontop of her notepad.
"Do you mind if i tape you?"
"No not at all," I give it a litte goofy arrogance. My humour is what usually wins out. Well, until people found out how screwed up I am. As soon as we start talking family it will snowball from there. My parents split, I hate my dad and we are anything but a functional model family.
I get comfortable and layout my things. He sits slouched in across from me. His eyes complete with dark circles seem to gaze at nothing. I wonder what the burden he carries could be. I hope he does ok. I wonder if his father was the devil like mine? Well lets get this started shall we...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Role of Video Games in My Life

A funny thing occurred to me today on the way through the living room. My roomates and I each contributed one video gaming console to the living room. A Super Nintendo , a Nintendo 64 and a Playstation. I should note that i keep an X-box 360 in my room simply because it is my baby. Maybe when I replace it once it becomes boring and obsolete will i bring it to the living bur not now.

Looking at those consoles and cartridges , playing those beeping and booping sounding games takes me back to different periods of my life. Mario was toddler, Sonic was young school boy, uhh...oh yeah then came the world of 3D and Krash bandicoot . Wow, good times one and all. Then in my early youth I discovered a game called Resident Evil 2. It was terrifying and also challenging with its endlessly furiating puzzles and monsters. The first ever horror and graphicly gory game I had ever played. I loved it! My box of games is much like a yearbook or photo album capturing moments in my life. Only these moments were somewhat a little less real. Apparently , saving the world from an alien invasion in a video game does not hold up as a notable accomplishment in life, but it meant a lot to me so rasberries to that!

After coming home from another day of the same old, same old thing there is nothing finer then shooting zombies, or dueling lightsabers, or even just dressing like a plumber and squishing turtles. It is my favourite form of escapism ( I do enough reading for homework!). Of course there are some nay sayers out there. Critical and skeptical folk who would suggest that video games are harmful must say so out of ignorance. Play it before you bash it. I will admit that the average player is missing out on a lot of exercise but thankfully there is the Wii. Have you ever played the Wii? Oh you got to play the Wii. It has encorporated physical activity into its gaming experience. The player actually has to get off the couch and make the motions for the on screen characters. Cool huh?Now we can all jump on those turtles for real! Wait,...that came out wrong.


Friday, September 18, 2009

How do you doodle in a computer lab?

The average class is what? An hour and a half? At least mine are anyway. Of course, i have never paid full attention to everything that is discussed during class time. Don't get me wrong, I still take notes and learn a thing or two. It is just that many times I find it difficult to keep from getting bored during class. Thats when my inner artist comes out to play. My notes are covered in doodles. Mostly of the superhero comic book variety but every now and then I spice it up with something extraordinary. For example, I may put something like ...lets say a cute squirrel, in the middle of the page. Then, whenever the prof is discussing something i dont need to hear, or a fellow student asks a question that makes me roll my eyes, I return to the squirrel and add as many tiny stick men(or stick women) around the squirrel battling it like it was Squirrelzilla. Y'know, holding machine guns, throwing grenades, ninja stick people, stick people jumping from planes with parachutes and the occasional flamethrower stick person. Part of the fun is coming up with new ideas like the circus stick figure who is shot out of a canon at the squirrel. If anyone reading this has never doodled a stick figure battlezone i highly recommend that it be tried. Fair warning, if you suddenly notice that class is over and you have no idea what was discussed then you went too far with you stick figures. What about those students who have computer labs? Just go into microsoft paint ( or whichever paint program) and get creative. I know that using a mouse is trickier then using a pen or pencil, but as with everything the more you do it the better you will become. Try filling the page with all black and then again with all orange. Next use the eraser and start making designs. You will notice that when you erase the orange, black will appear underneath. This allows you to design crazy jack o lanterns without mangling a bunch of pumpkins. Enjoy!