Thursday, December 31, 2009

Published articles on Ottawatonite

Check out the featured blog

And, the sin sisters show.

Interview with Sadie hell is coming up.

The next life step

Greetings and salutations, there’s been so many links to the this blog on Ottawatonite, I feel I must retort in kind. It’s the last day of the year and things area pretty cool. During a christmas visit to my grandparents house in Kingston, I found a receptive audience to my updates and was touched at the detailed questions pertaining to my blog. Family support is insurmountable in my journey, emotionally and otherwise. This is the time of year to celebrate those ties and to understand family as a broad concept since familial love has been arriving and reciprocated in various forms.

The music and arts family is an expansive web that I can always rely on. On boxing day I received a note from Nat Miles, owner of the Elmdale House Tavern, she was touched by my plans to cross the country by bike and offered her venue as a starting point. The cool thing is that as I was sending her a thanking you note, I noticed in the Ottawa Citizen that the Elmdale was voted “hot” as a desirable and crucial concert house. It was a bit of synchronistic which made me realize that I’m on the right track for the right reasons. Living my life by following my passions, I’ve aligned myself with others who are doing the same. That being said, I’m entering into a new experimental phase of my life, in polarity to the post capitalism experiment which found me living in an enchanted forest, surviving on roasted oysters and through an act of pure joy, was dumpsterdiving and consequently feeding a gang of 5 to 20 hungry teenagers. I spent my days reading, long-boarding, exploring and basically having fun all the time. It grew a bit tiresome after a while since I had no challenges to overcome. Eventually I came across a hot yoga studio, moved in and started doing yoga about three times a day.

This new endeavor will focus on the arrangement of time and effort to produce positive outcomes. For the next four months, I will maintain a, (new word in the english lexicon) pro-active approach to getting things done. The main hurdle is to cast away any fear of success or of hard work. I’ve always known that I have the some of the best qualities any human can hope for, it’s time to fully embrace my talents, intelligence, tender heart and spiritual sensibilities. The more I work, the more people will recognize my innate power and beauty and be inspired to follow their hearts as I have mine.

I’ll keep this blog updated, since having an audience entails a responsibility and it contributes to the dissemination of my hopes and dreams. So here we go, it’s time to live Maximalism.

Monday, December 21, 2009

I'm a now a web-published writer

That's right folks, all the momentum from my blog has inspired me to do some writing for a local site called . Hope you enjoy.“up-the-ottawa-without-despair”/

Sunday, December 13, 2009

My favourite book.

My favourite book was written by my grandfather, it's called "Getting the Shaft". Grandpa worked for the atomic energy commission in Washington during the 1950's, he was partly responsible for the dissemination of nuclear power in the US and Canada. Eventually he learned that any processed fuel takes at least, and you can check this with the EPA, ten thousand years before it's safe to handle. Eventually he worked with the anti nuclear movement and he and his family moved to Manitoba, to get away from the draft and pollution of the late sixties.

They bought some property in the country, near a municipality called Lake du Bonney. Low and behold the Canadian nuclear industry wanted to create an underground waste facility in the area. The book entails my grandparents struggle to prevent such a facility from being built. Grandpa got black listed from many jobs, but eventually they won. In the eighties the manitoba legislature passed a law which prevented the transportation of nuclear waste anywhere in the province. This effectively shut down the waste industry and my Grandfather, now in his mid eighties, continues his anti-nuclear activist work, mostly online now.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My plan to bike across the country.

Cycles. Rhythm is first and cycles are second. On one of the Ramones live CDs, every song starts the same, “1,2,3,4”. Getting that cadence out, so others can join in and you can better communicate within the song. Changes of key, tempo and chord will invariably end at the end of one of those four counts, unless it’s classical music, and there’s a “rest”. But for traditional music, blues, rock and roll, funk and others, a few sentences at the beginning of a song will communicate the coming formation. Musicians will anticipate hints which direct them into the next change in the song. I think that’s what I’m doing here with my words, communicating the upcoming changes.

Since January of ’08, I’ve been working on seasonal changes of four months or less, then living somewhere else or doing something completely different. For the first time since then, I’ve committed myself to eight months of the same city, not necessary the same house, in order to complete my university degree. Monday marked the end of the first semester, the sudden coming of winter and the end of another cycle. Toward the end it had many qualities of something dying and waiting to be reborn. On the school front, I haven’t been doing much, but I spoke to my profs about my musical ambitions, so they’re cool with that. The relationship with Chelsea is officially over but were still frequently hanging out. We’re still quite fond of each other but we’re still doing something we did too much of before we broke up, that’s talk about the breakup.

The positive thing is that, as when I broke up with my highschool girlfriend, mentioned two updates ago, I grew spiritually. Since the breakup I’ve kept my room clean for going on a week ( a new record) and I’ve been maintaining my practices of meditation, yoga and breakdancing. I’m starting to build new relationships with people on the internet, getting back into longboarding and have been formulating my plan to cross the country on a bicycle.

I view this trip as my official coming out in terms of media and national attention. I’ve know for ages that I’m destined to be a shining star of some sort, the last cross country tour confirmed it and now I’m raising the bar. Bicycle awareness will be the banner under which I’ll ride this year. The song “I like my bike” was one of the best received of late and is something I can stand behind. It’s fun to write and perform songs with messages that come from the heart. A few weeks ago, I was commissioned to record a version of “solidarity forever” to be played and sang along to at the health and safety conference of the Public Service Alliance of Canada. I didn’t go, but three hundred people sang along to my recorded words. I’m going to carry that same vibe across the country.

The details are starting to come together in my mind. I hope to gather a decent sized crew, hopefully growing as we go. We’ll camp out in forests, fields and parking lots, locking our bikes together at night. I’ll organize concerts to expose our message to as many people as possible and help fund the trip. We’ll play fairs and markets and gatherings all the way across. Yes, it sounds idealistic and vague, but all it really takes is a bike, trailer and will to do it. I’ve hauled multiple instruments and amps behind a bike and there’s no reason a tent, stove and hatchet won’t fit in as well. The next step is to gather the crew and organize or locate the shows and places to sleep. Then comes the media blitz, which I’ll promote with all my heart. The press loves a good story, and this writes itself. I’d like to extend this invitation to anyone who wants to do something amazing and utterly positive during these up coming summer months. There are many way’s to support oneself on the road, check the blog entry about eating for free, but saving money now is a good way to make a safety net. The stopping points will probably be fairly close together, in order to accommodate a leisurely pace and any young folks that might be a bit slower.

A traveling bike fair would be a pretty cool thing. Carry around a makeshift stage and sound system, have bike fixing and chopping workshops, arts and crafts for sale, a bike orchestra, trike racing, jousting, drama, clowns, music lessons, face painting ect.. Making the project self-sustainable and eco friendly is an obvious.

I think this project is worth while and I’m going to start putting the wheels in motion. How pun!


Getting hit on

Thick snow today, welcome back winter. After I’m finished this degree, I’ll never spend more then a month in these conditions again.

As for the crazy things that happened to me so far today... I was sitting at the bar of a restaurant at Algonquin College, my friend Chelsea made a music video as a project and all the videos were going to be shown. She was off making a news bit about the showing when a a pretty black girl with a walker came up to me. She was well dressed in matching clothes and styled hair, I would associate her condition with cerebral palsy, but I’m not sure. We exchanged greetings and she asked me what my name was. I introduced myself and asked hers, she pulled out a folded piece of paper from her pocket. On one side it said , “Ifr”, I said “Ifrah”, since I knew an Ifrah in high school. I unfolded the rest and yes, that was her name. I asked if she was student and she told me she worked, then preceded to pull out a cap from her bag, it read, “market valley foods”. Apparently she enjoyed working there. She then pulled out and handed me another folded piece of paper, written in the same red ink, all capitals. It said “are you single by any chance? If you don’t mind me asking.” I though that was very sweet, I like a girl who gets right to the point. I told her I was single and that I had recently finished being in a serious relationship with Chelsea, who was walking up at that point. I made the introductions and Chelsea said, “yeah he is single, and be very, very careful with him, cause he’s trouble.” Ifrah turned around and walked away.

Later that day I realized you can get free food at restaurants by sending things back and when freeing a car from a snow drift, it's important to maintain a rocking motion.

On meditation

One day in 2007 I was feeling out of play in a relationship and felt the need to break it off with my long term girlfriend. That night I started writing about spiritual things, I let out a lot of steam into those pages. The next day I told my girlfriend I loved her and a few days later we got back together. Later, while reading some Buddhist material, I realized my writing had many similar tones. I think I was influenced by that episode of the Simpsons when Bart enters into a mini-put contest and Liza offers a zen approach. So I started asking around and doing more research into Buddhism.

A few weeks later I was boarding a coach to Montreal in order to record an album with my band. I've always been a fan of striking up conversation with whom ever happens to be around me and while waiting in line, I asked the fellow next to me if he knew anything about Buddhism. He asked me why I was asking him, I replied simply because he was next to me. His name was Khan and he was the first ever child Buddhist monk in Canada. He was about 24 then, finishing university and still living at the temple. We sat together on the bus and he answered question after question. One aspect that I found most telling is the eternal moment, that everything that's ever happened and that will happen, is happening simultaneously in the present. And that we can always alter the future. He told me about reincarnation, when we create good Karma, we receive more pleasure and happiness, immediately and in as a more perfect being in the next life. When a soul has multiple positive reincarnation, they might become a monk. After a few or many incarnation of being a monk, the soul becomes enlightened and becomes a buddha.

The continuum of Karma is what I liked the most. In the Christian faith, much judgement and focus is put on the afterlife. There's one life to prove yourself, then up or down for eternity. Whereas if we produce good karma, we invite heaven on earth. Conversely, if we smoke all our lives, we invite hell on earth for ourselves and our families as we slowly die from Cancer.

Khan taught me one way to meditate, which I still practice. Sitting with you back straight, either on the floor or in a chair, eyes half open, slowly breathe in and out ten times. Simple as that. Another way is to not alter your breath at all, just be aware of the natural rhythm and eventually it will slow itself down. I always feel grounded, calm and at piece when I do this. I like glancing at a clock or using an alarm if there's something to do afterwards. Khan was a very happy and fulfilled man, he was responsible for putting on parties and concerts at the Buddhist centre in Montreal, I should track him down.

I've been writing about active meditation, start by breathing slowly and consciously, then break dancing or long boarding or writing. Filling yourself with positive energy, recognizing yourself as a spiritual and holy being, then engaging that action with your whole heart. When you practice that enjoyable action, it will contribute to the world around you.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Crazy Hobos and Winter Biking.

Yesterday I wrote three good pages off the top of my head about Hip Hop spirituality. For whatever reason, it was deleted and lost to annals of great work everywhere. To keep up the daily blog routine, I instead published a work intended for the upcoming magazine. Rather then re writing it, I attempted to make the first episode of my very own web show. I was talking about the subject matter that was lost, but I think the blog was better, mostly because I had the time to refer back to my research, today it was all off the top of my head. The short video is somewhat captivating though, I think it could be a good medium for acting, entertainment and dissemination of the cool things I think about. Again, I attribute the creation of the temple, and smoking pot, to the web show going from a passing thought to reality. Having themes, skits, interviews, lessons and various segments will probably improve the product. It felt very Wayne’s World. The other day I listened to the pod cast of my internet friend Hooch, singer from the Matadores. It was well made, quick and funny, punchiness is good sometimes.

I see my show as a reflection of my life, going around documenting all the crazy things I do and witness every day. I didn’t leave the house till mid evening and things were fairly calm for the first twenty minutes until I ran into my friend Richard, waiting for the bus at Summerset and Bank. Richard looked perturbed and was describing his immediate environment into his cell phone, he briefly said hello and kept nervously speaking. I didn’t equate it to the man slouched on the ground amidst the waiting group. I got on the back door and the new passengers filled in. The fellow that was lying on the ground came in last, he was swaying and looked in pretty bad shape. He was fairly clean shaven, had a foot and a half of long dirty blond hair, was wearing a lumberjacket, had a nice smile and big beautiful eyes that were wild and seemed to be looking right and left at the same time. When Richard stood next to him at the front of the bus, still jabbering into his phone, I made the connection that he was trying to help this guy out.

After about four minutes of discussion, the driver let the dude stay on and we took off. He was flailing as he walked, but seemed to be in a decently good mood. At first he stammered all the way next to me at the middle of the bus, hair bouncing around, before Richard informed him he had cleared the priority seating near the front. Sitting down, he immediately saw everyone eyes falling directly on him. He responded with a big smile and yelled, “Look at all you f@#king immigrants”. This caused the two young asian girl next to him to quickly scramble away and the driver to announce, “any more language like that and you’re off the bus”. Richard tried to shush him, his response was “whatever, I’m fucked all ready”. “F#$cking immigrants”, he muttered.

I moved forward to say hello to Richard and see if I could be of any assistance. Richard didn’t know the guy and told me paramedics were waiting for him at Bronson. I offered, “so your in pretty rough shape huh?”. To this he grumbled incoherently. Richard asked me what was new, I was telling him about the play I was in when over the PA I heard, “were just going to wait here for the transit enforcement.” It was surprising since the guy was being fairly peaceful at this point. I noticed the mini anarchy tattoo on his hand. At the sound of the announcement, he dashed for the door. Considering circumstances, it was probably a wise idea. Moments later, a husky working class guy with a buzz cut marched after him and announced that we need to get him off the bus. Richard turned to see the recipient of his charity had already gone and went to follow him. The buddies of the working class guy congratulated him and the bus carried on in silence. Later I realized that richard’s number was in my old cell phone, so I was unable to find out how the rest of his story went. God speed Richard.

That guy was right, he is fucked. He’ll probably go on to doing terrible things, like yelling at young asian girls on the bus, but it’s because he’s the product of a series of bad situation, environments and karma. His only real crime is the loss of personal control, when things like alcohol and drugs start making the big decision in life, the small good or bad ones are negligible and interchangeable. He’ll probably get arrested, thrown in the drunk tank, sleep it off, repeat. Has there always been these hollow beings, that live only to further wealth of others by destroying themselves? This guy needs a full time baby sitter to prevent further abuse to himself or others. He’s a tornado of a man, empty in the middle.

So that’s what the show will be about, maybe, being able to capture the rad crazy stuff that seems to happen to me almost every day. That and window’s into the “mundane” parts of the general public is pretty cool too. I was picking up some things at the Carleton tavern, overhearing a snow clearing company’s plan of attack. It involved a lot of strategy, especially surrounding city plows. The employees looked pretty board, but at least they got to drink. From the back, one of them looked like a boy of 11, when leaving I made some noise, the twenty something girl turned around. I wanted to ask each of them what their lives were like, what were their dreams and goals, and how long they planned to do the snow plow thing. The guy at the head of the table had a blue tooth piece on his ear, I thought ‘identity marker’, and was less interested in his lifestyle. He was peppering his speech with facts “sixty percent of your costumers will want this kind of service”. It sounded like a good way to get a point across. When I was finished rolling and stuffing my well made suit into my backpack, a tall man dressed in dark hip hop clothes walked by. He reminded me of the guy from earlier, it looked liked he might have been part of an underbelly of society but was working hard to go straight. Maybe the two of them were friends once. I think everyone on the table wanted to leave.

My bike was also locked up at the bar, it had been there for two weeks. Good thing my lock is good and the bike looks a bit chincy. It was my first official winter ride, my helmet and ski goggles felt great and I barely slipped at all. I missed my bike and was happy to have it back. I was philosophizing about how the bike is an evolved activity. It satisfies the emotional, spiritual, intellectual and of course physical needs. Emotional since it’s fun as heck to zip down hill and around corners with grace and ease. Intellectual because a knowledge of maintenance, traffic laws and bike lanes is necessary. Physical is my favorite because it’s a rigorous but low impact exercise that you can alter by body conscious moments and bike choice. Spiritual because it combines self expression with a universally conscious attitude. Bikes do a lot less global damage then other forms of transportation and your not isolated like in care.The bike becomes an extension of the body and mind, a perfect vehicle for transportation. I’ll be biking across the country come may and your all welcome to join me. More on that vision to come.

I ran into my friend Nat Myles who owns the Elmdale tavern, I’d love to interview her for the web show. She’s a jovial character who’s created a perfect space for roots music and it’s thriving. The tavern has a great sound system, a great staff and tones off engaging acts all week long. I think all these good vibes flow directly from a fully involved and dedicated owner. Tonight was the open mike put on by the, “spirit of Rasputin’s”, referring to a folk cafe that burned down a few years ago. It was a pivotal space for Ottawa music and it’s great to see this organization continuing it’s tradition. When ever I performed at Rasputin’s, the owner Dean Verger announced that I was the third generation of musicians to play there. My grandparents graced the stage less then five years ago with their band, The Righteous Few and my mother played that stage with her band, The Last Minute Band.

I always equated that band with my mother’s pregnancy with my sister. There’s a great picture of the four women, sans instruments, taken at the big back yard party we had to celebrate my parents wedding. My mom has a great big belly in that picture. It would be cool to be fetus surrounded by talented women playing traditional stringed instruments and singing harmonies.

After chatting with Nat, I biked downtown, retracing my steps from saturday night, because I’ve lost the tweed jacket that I dubbed “the flag ship of my wardrobe”. I bought it for grade eight graduation and it still looks(ed) great. It was disappointing to loose it but it didn’t bother me to much. Sometimes it’s good to loose things we rely on, it forces us to grow and change. I found myself saying out loud,”thats the thing about physical possession, they come and go. Just like every other form of structure”. Hopefully it will come back to me, it was like a security blanket.

There was no sign of it at the Dominion tavern, nor Zack’s diner where I hung out on Saturday night. I’ve been writing at the Diner for the past few hours and things have been going well. And wouldn’t you know it, another strange character has found himself in my sphere. As soon as he walked in the door, his appearance set off alarm bells. Disheveled hair and beard, he wore an out of style sweat shirt and stank from five feet away. The server was wary of him and established he’d been their earlier that day, even though he denied it, or couldn’t remember it. He got some coffee and planted himself next to me. He said it was his first day off in four years. I asked him what his business was, he said it used to be something illegal, more recently a security guard and showed me an security ID from 2004. In the picture he was clean cut and handsome, he had more wrinkles and scabs now. He commented about my lap top and said he had one too and opened it up. We went into a conversation about hacking wireless networks, he seemed informed and used specific jargon. He mentioned a ride came when he was getting the second page of algorithms, so the information was incomplete. He noticed the flavored cigaret with the gold filter on my table and commented that he had just smoke one like that earlier. He went on to mention that fact twice more, each time he sounded genuinely surprised when he saw the smoke. As with the last guy, he was lost in a fog of some substance or another. He spoke fairly intelligently, but in tangents and often repeating himself. He kept going out for cigarets, but would come back with the smoke still in his hand. I asked him about his name, Theo, it derived from theology, kind of cool. I asked if he was spiritual, he said he followed the tides, any tides. He kept trying to access the internet but each time came across the need for a password, this frustrated him.

I asked what he did with his computer, he said torrents. Movies or music, anything he could get. Eventually the staff kicked him out. I felt bad because he wasn’t causing trouble, just ranting away to me. He was really stinky and going on about codes and some guy he stopped doing business with because his kids and family took too much time. The staff was peristent and he left without too much of a fuss; the stated reason was he was bothering the customers. “Your going to hang out with these hobos?” he asked me as he was packing up his gear, referring to the staff. I thought that was pretty funny. Outside he was complaining to my friend Roger, who just kicked him out, that those jerks inside had just kicked him out. His memory was faulty, I pictured myself in his reality, floating in and out of strange situations. I felt it was a bit unnecessary to throw him out, but he did stink like the dickens. Roger said that was the real reason, and told him so much later on. It felt discriminatory because he had cash and was being fairly peaceful, but it’s fair not to accept such foul odors into a place of eating. I didn’t bring my power cable, so eventually the computer ran out of steam and I took off. I think I’ll be doing much more work there in the future.

I was delighted to be back on my bike again. Last year was when I got into winter biking in a big way and it brought back a flood of great feelings. I made my way to Elgin street and was enticed by my friend Christina to check out the open mike. Derek the host does a great job and brings out a big group of his friends. The music was grand and many people appreciated my performance. I saw my friend Naomi and we did some grounding meditation together in the middle of the bar. I’m sure it must have looked a bit odd, but if felt great. My friend Emily was there as well, she was dating my former musical partner, Miles. We had some great discussions and I look forward to hearing her perform at my open mike.

The temple in the room experiment is still going well. Today was day four and I did thirty of each move and have started to experiment with different time lengths. I’m going for ten minutes of meditating, twenty of yoga then thirty of b-boying. I fell into my old habits of enjoying sleep in the morning. For the last two days I woke up/got out of bed when my parents decided to check if I was home or not. Tomorrow is the last day of school for the semester, I might not sleep before then, but I will go. In order to get some sleep in so I’m not a total zombie, I’ll have to hold off the rituals until after class. Dang...

Love you all,


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Dumpster diving and eating for free

I was saving this one for the magazine, but it's a bit directionless now, so here we go.

My first encounter with dumpster diving was at the age of 18 while bumming around in Amsterdam. After staying in hostels for the first few weeks of my European journey, I was inspired by my new friend Jordan to attempt surviving by alternative means. Jordan had spent the last five years or so as a genuine hobo, he’d travelled all over the States, the Americas and Europe. He was completely self sufficient, even carrying a top of the line digital camera everywhere he went. I was sitting on top of a half pipe with some british dudes when Jordan walked by. I commented on the violin case he’d painted bones on and we were pals from there on in. We cruised around Amsterdam without a care in the world, going on new adventures everyday. In order to save money, we’d hang around populated areas and would always find plenty of food in a matter of minutes. I recall a certain Chinese food stand that had those white buckets which no one ever finished. It was a plethora of greasy treats and surprises that spring of 2005. I gained a new perspective on the value of food and the reality of consumer culture. I got plenty of filthy looks when I pulled clean and sealed food from the garbage, but those looks didn’t affect me, I had friends. When Jordan and I parted ways, I was somewhat reluctant to display my garbage eating ways. I wanted to meet new people and first impression are utterly important.

Coming back to Canada, I usually had cash and except for broken bikes and tossed out treasures, I felt no strong desire to dumpster dive. This all changed when I landed in Parksville BC. I had just completed a cross country tour and had begun my next phase of “Being in BC without a plan”. I had met a hillbilly band en-route to a concert, played with them that night and they asked me to join. Moving into their studio, things were moving along quite well. Concerts were always on the weekends so I was free to explore the cute little resort/retirement town. I became acquainted with the youth after a day and found a tight nit but expansive social circle. They all revolved around a big apartment found in the middle of town above a sporting goods store. Many of them were musicians, they loved longboarding and were infatuated with the fantasy role playing game of “Magic”.

A few members of the circle of friends had a nightly routine at 10:30 pm. That was when the last janitor left the local grocery store and the dumpsters around back were free to be pillaged. They would bring a light and take ever present garbage bag of bread that was thrown out every night, sometimes every second night. One would hold open the lid while the other would reach inside and grab the bounty. Cracking open the bag back at the pad, muffins, bagels, croissants and all sorts of loaves were found inside and devoured.

After the first few trips with them, I realized this process would have to be maximalized.

Much like winter biking, attire and tools are key to any successful dumpster diving expedition. I donned old jeans tucked into high laced, light boots. My top half consisted of a long sleeve shirt tucked into work gloves, a head mounted flashlight and an old ball cap. The uniform was lucky and every night I scored big.

As 10:30 rolled around we would stuff our pockets with cloth grocery bags and take off on our bikes and long boards. The times I went by myself made me feel like a super hero, (dumpsterman, or something), but it’s quicker and easier in a team. I would hum the theme to mission impossible as pried open the lid and crept my way in. Turning the light on, there would always be a new layer of veggies ready to be plucked. Completely unnoticeable from the outside, I would fill bag after bag, taking care to take the food that lay away from the raw meet. When a new bag was full, I’d chirp to my friends who lay in hiding, waiting to grab the overflowing bags. After recovering all the firm produce, our caravan would return to the apartment, always stoked. On the short trips back we always spoke of the elation we felt. We knew that everyday, in every grocery store around the world, mountains of edible, nutritious food was being condemned to landfills. Those avocados and oranges had travelled thousands of miles, only to be tossed in the trash. We were liberators.

At home I envisioned assembly lines of washing, drying then storing the food. In reality I did most of that myself. That refrigerator was filled up and emptied on every few days. The next step was the cooking. I worked in restaurants for years for the purpose of learning how to prepare food. Now I got to use my skills in more rewarding and fulfilling manner.

This method of cooking was like none that I’d ever experienced. It was entirely experimental, being subjected to a variety of new ingredients every day. We routinely had piles of new food, my goal was to quickly transform it into a form which was delectable to a gang of hungry teenagers. Turns out it wasn’t so hard. Once I found a good formula, my basic approach altered little from day to day, but since the ingredients always changed, the dishes were constantly reinvented, seeming new and different.

One ingredient that’s utterly important yet difficult to dumpster is beans. They offer protein which is essential to any diet and are delicious. Good beans are best found at health food stores, more on that later.

The key to cooking a lot of food quickly is timing and being good with a knife. Most people don’t know how to hold a kitchen knife in properly. Start by holding the knife how you think you should, by the handle, then slide your hand up, so you can pinch the blade between your thumb a index finger. This will offer you much more control and leverage. Wrap some masking tape around the lowest fleshy part of your finger and it will hurt less with repetitive use. Now that you know how to use a knife, it’s food time.

These are my recommendations to start experimenting with the preparation of dumpster food. To maximize your time, cook as much food as you can at once, then freeze it or give it away as a form of good Karma. In terms of Fridges and Microwaves, it’s not a matter of finding, more hauling them home instead of tripping on one left in the trash. These allow you to cook in volume, that’s the way food was traditionally made and how corporations do it. If you freeze as you go, eventually this offers a collections of various batches you’ve made.

At this stage, check out online recipes, searching by ingredient, this will inspire you, but don’t let it limit you. Achieving a specific taste is not our aim here, we’re making tasty nutrients. When you’re good to go, it’s important to be cutting and cooking at the same time. The way to do this is by mentally organizing and then cutting your ingredients in other of density. Potatoes, carrots all the way to celery. The exception in this case is onions and garlic, toss them in early in order to flavor the dense food. Big chunks of these acidy bulbs go further. You’ll always have a steady supply of those two and they react differently with everything. Choose pots or pans which accommodate all the vegetables, packaged or fresh meat, noodles, fish, noodles or anything else cookable. Throw in a bit of water and some oil if you have it and turn in onto fifty to 65 percent heat. When you get comfortable with cooking multiple pots at once, high heat is best. Start with the onions and garlic, use goggles.

As soon as the onions and garlic go in, start to chop the dense stuff. As it starts to sizzle, start cutting and tossing in. Time spent cooking G and O will affect the rest of the stew, experiment. Be careful to be as tidy as possible and clean up as you go. Most skin on veggies is edible and toss everything you don’t use into a bucket for composting. DIY composting is can be creative and fun. Use a bucket that hangs from a balcony, toss frequently and you’ll have great dirt to start your own rooftop or windowsill vegetable garden.

Keep cutting, tossing in a stirring. Soon you’ll have a big pot full of veggies and meat (if it was sealed or fresh when you found it) cooking away. It might taste bland so that’s where spices come in. From time to time you’ll find them in the dry goods section of grocery store dumpsters, a more reliable way to secure them is at health food stores. Most towns have one and often they are staffed with progressively minded people. GET BEANS HERE, protein is utterly important for your health. Use your people skills to make friends with the staff and/or management. Explain the fact that you’re feeding a number of poor kids or artists and especially be willing to trade time, art or money. You never know, they might give the expired food right there and then. More on the treatment of the people and dumpster diving 2.0 later. Steal from the big box chain grocery stores but not the independent ones. A few arrests never hurt anyone, especially if you’re an aspiring activist figure or badass musician. There’s a lot of leeway and sympathy for polite, non-violent garbage diggers.

At this point, you’ve gone through the lastAdd spices to taste, keep tasting it and changing it as you go. Spices are strongest when added late. Try not to over cook, as that will zap the flavor. Cut up some bread on the side and voi la. Before serving, (this part sucks) but make sure to assign cleaning duties. I’ve single handedly cooked for fifteen people, without having a soul offer cleaning duties. One way to make this easier is to play the change and bottle game. Everyone who’s eating dump the change in the pockets into a jar, spin the bottle, who every it lands on get’s paid to do the dishes. Just make damn sure that someone is responsible before everyone starts eating.

I find the stew to be a quick and easy way to feed a lot of people. Roasts are great to make as well, but everything needs to be cut up before hand. Another option is the food processor. You can halve your carrots and they’ll be ready for a blades attached to a good motor. Don’t worry about skin, the key is to get the food in a size that makes it faster.

Raw dumpster diving is something that has fascinated me but I haven’t attempted it beyond the sealed off bread bag. Raw food offers more nutrients but if it’s been near rotting food, cooking it is safer.

An alternative digging for food is something I’ve labeled dumpster diving 2.0. I was visiting a friend at the local franchise of a coffee shop mega chain and off-handly asked if she threw out any any food. The answer was obviously yes, everyday they threw out bags of sealed, uneaten sandwiches, muffins, biscotti, cookies ect. This was effectively the end of my feeding 10-15 teens a day, but I was doing yoga three hours a day at that point and was pretty busy anyway. Until I left Parksville, my friend Daryl and I were handed between 5 and ten fancy Starbucks sandwiches every day. It was a big sad laugh in the face of capitalism, because once again, those same sandwiches go into the trash everyday, everywhere else.

DD 2.0 is hit and miss. Like the health food stores, personal relationships are important. Workers are usually on camera and there is the possibility of getting in trouble. My friends scanned the food, marking it for the trash, waited till the managers were out of the room, then outrightly handed them over, without repercussion. When I moved to Vancouver, I tried appealing to the good will and morality of a coffee shop worker there. It was ten minutes to closing, I told her I was new to the city, broke and hungry, but she was worried about keeping her job, so like I said, hit and miss. Then I walked two doors over to the local subway. This time I casually got the worker to tell me how much waste they produced each day. That plus a little flirting got me a free footlong. If your in a bind and don’t have any place to cook food, this technique can be helpful. Dressing semi-conservatively helps as well as finding none busy food outlets, they’ll have more to throw out at the end of the night. In terms of a back story, fashion one that’s odd but acceptable. Start by chatting them up like nothing’s out of order. Listen intently, ask questions and soon they’ll be grateful for the company. A great segue to the waste question is whether they like working there. Casually use their name in the conversation (it’s on their name tag) and get them to expand on any personal details they slip into the conversation. Most people’s favorite word is their own name, enjoy (if secretly) when people pay attention to them and like gripping about their job. This is somewhat manipulative, but your goal is to get a bit of grub that they would otherwise be tossing, so it’s okay, heck why not experiment with you new power over this poor clerk.

Another way to eat for free is soup kitchens. Soup kitchens are generally awesome. Separate from the missions where people sleep, kitchen’s are clean, only ask for a quick scribble on a signature page and folks are generally well behaved. You’ll you meet cool freaks, travelers, drunks and hookups if you need to score! The volunteers usually compassionate and outgoing people and the food is generally holism and delicious. Every big city has a place were you can go to eat for free and without hassle every day of the week. Ask the local hobo/punk population and they’ll set you up. Vancouver has a sik temple that offers fantastic free indian food.

The point is that if you try to get food for free, it’s much more fun and freaky way to get nutrience.

Creation of the temple

That last blog really took the cake didn’t it? It was the first piece of feedback so I suppose it’s par for the course.

The actually important stuff is the temple I built in my room. I do believe that two days ago I went into some detail about the construction, operation and development of my new space and rituals. I didn’t wake up at any particular time either day, but each day, as soon as I woke, I went to the bathroom, washed my genitals and pits, ate an apple, lit a candle, meditated in front of a mirror, did some yoga, then break danced for around 45 minutes. Today I did in both directions, ten six-steps, coffee grinders and air-swipes. I was exhausted at the end of it, but I felt great. I was muttering to my self, “what a great way to start the day”.

The point of it is, I did it. I proposed two days ago that I was to undergo a self imposed spiritual growth and it happened in front of me. One cool thing is that while talking to a pretty girl about playing the banjo, I instinctually offered up my now clean temple to jam in. I had been rationalizing that the mess was okay because I wouldn't be doing anything with the space anyway. Now that it’s clean, so is my mind for new opportunities. An even cooler thing, is that after I proposed we jam at my place, I then found out that this certain friend of mine, whom I’ve known for about a year, has been inspired and directed by spiritual midwifery for the last five years. She’s help diliver around 17 babies and has traveled to Ghana to work in a nursery. It was a lovely conversation and I look forward to jamming with Gillian. That’d be a cool band name or a for a folk TV show, Jamming with Gillian.

Speaking of Band names, I’m thinking I’ll call the band Maxim and the automatics. I think Maxim et les automatiques might have a better ring. Tell me what you think, maybe I’ll post this in face book so more people take a gander.

Another effect of the construction of my personal temple is the continued references I keep dropping to Hip Hop spirituality. By break dancing and listening to hip hop every morning, when people ask me how I’m doing, I’ll suddenly decry the marvels of positive, traditional hip hop. It became a tool of truth when I found myself in an unsavory position. A girl online told me that I made her smile, so I took the liberty of prattling off the standup jokes I’m in the process of writing. I wrote a satirical joke about attempting to reverse the effects of racism by going out and complimenting the color of black people’s skin. The joke is in poor taste in order to shock and is supposed to sound racist.This is because racists generally don’t know/think they are racist. She said that this kind of communication was unacceptable and chose to cease the correspondence. I bore my soul and the supporting columns of black culture that lay within. I spoke about my ritual and offered my apology. She seemed like a fascinating creature and I hope we can resolve the differences.

I haven’t mentioned the fact that I spend countless hours on a web site called “plenty of fish”, I think it’s a cleaver name, it’s a free dating site and I’ve hooked up with some very cool people on it. Chelsea and I found each other on that site and we went out for three months. I’ve also talked to a lonely house wife, not looking for anything on the side, and an aspiring musician mother of three, interested in performing at my open mike. It’s an insight to the general population and the general result is pretty bleak. I spend hours sifting through countless profiles which state they are “laid back” and “love hanging out with their friends”. My real-life friend Danny suggested they want to present themselves as social creatures, who are comfortable with groups. This is an entirely valid point, but there’s a certain lack of individuality in the way these people express themselves. Either way, it’s become like an addiction to sifting for gold in a creek with a decent reputation. I like that the “matches” are constantly changed in the order of when they came online. The result is a furthering of the new voyeurism which has sprung up with Myspace and Facebook. Spending countless hours sifting over the details, especially pictures, of someone else life. When you do find that occasional gold nugget, it’s extra special. I hadn’t stumbled onto Chelsea’s profile once before she messaged me. And we’d both been in ottawa, using the system for about six months.

I check out the profile of a girl with really pretty eyes, she posted a pancake recipe. She looked pretty nutty and I hope I get to meet her one day.

I didn’t mess around on the internet today as much as I did yesterday. Yesterday I surfed aimlessly for hours and eventually recorded and broadcasted a video of me covering “chocolate Jesus” on the banjo. I attribute it to the temple, once again. I was supposed to play a concert with a guy named Billy Boone. It was going to be in drum and bass style. I was looking forward to collaborating and expanding my playing into new directions. Unfortunately circumstances thwarted that endeavor, but dance music will remain a focus of mine. Eventually I went out to see John Aaron Cockburn, who just got back from a 6 week tour of eastern Europe. I asked him about any musical technics he picked up on the road. His response was a zen one. He spoke about absorbing the energy of his environments and re-circulating them though is actions. All and all I’d say it sounded like an incredible trip. He’s experienced the thick of traditional Romanian culture. He wrote a travel journal, hopefully he’ll publish it one day. Apparently Matt Smith has a travel journal of his trip to Spain, perhaps our journals will make it into the new zine.

We hung out for a bit and my friend said a certain girl we know had repeated a certain erotic proposition involving him and I. I was reluctant and first, I think I’m a lot more conservative then most people think. A few minutes later, I was coveting a certain knit jacket that Andre had worn that night. I asked him what he wanted for it, he said engage the proposition and it would be mine. It’s a beautiful jacket and I’m looking forward to wearing it more often. The proposition reminded me of an expansion I’d made on in the last time I’d hear it.

That expansion is the creation of a Christian Morality free zone. A time once a month or week, when people get together and explore sexuality and creativeness in a safe and peaceful environment. I envision a routine haven where respectful individuals are at peace to acknowledge the universal desire to be touched and appreciated by others. I think my financial situation is will soon be more lucrative and I’d love to provide a space that facilitates and encourages such behavior. The job is another cool thing that I chock up to my new temple. I’ll be teaching guitar and piano to kids in “at risk” neighborhoods. Some powerful and connected people are responsible for financing this project and I’m hoping it might offer a spring board into my goal of summer festivals. I got this news from my long time guitar teacher and mentor, Kurt Walther.

Here are some notes I wrote while talking to two cool dudes at Zack’s diner.
An Ottawa cultural blog.

the zietgiest roll spirit.

Vacation as valhalla.

Not always hustling. I’m doing the hustle cause I’m break dancing.

Check out core yoga. Centrality and neutrality through exertion. Power yoga.

I’ve been loafing at this diner for ages.

I’ve been inspired to write about the cultural story of Ottawa.

I’m sitting at Zacks diner and the place is buzzing at three thirty AM on a Sunday morning. Some 18 year olds are extolling the fight they got into earlier. like lions celebrating a prey. “I hear you guys cheering me on and shit. You were like, ‘your a bitch, your a bitch.” It makes me want to pick fights. Accidentally bump into people, profusely apologize and play weak, then strike the temple! Only for the purpose of good though.

I’m starting to hit that stride of raw energy that claws at me in the early morning. Here at the restaurant, I’ve been trolling my cell for numbers of girls who own warm beds I might crawl into. I’m not on the internet, so my POF resources are limited. All I can do now is to read back over the many profile pictures and descriptions I’ve saved on my hard-drive, just kidding.

Barry asked me what I saw when I looked at the scene in front of me. I see stagnancy. This diner is little more then a late night junior country-club. I dig the fifties nostalgia, but this venue feels too much like a haven, the food is expensive, the clothes are well tailored and everyone is almost exactly the same age. This is a place where we spend money freely and the servers are rewarded if they present a positive attitude while walking endlessly back and forth across the room. The tall blond girl has been working here for years. I’ve never talked to her, but I’ve always speculated on the details of the rest of her life. She’s beautiful but a bit self-conscious in a conservative. The image that come to mind are Christianity, university, suburbs, maybe ridding horses, some kind of intellectually honorable pursuit, like becoming a veterinarian. But the longevity of her tenure and slow but steady evolution of fashion makes me think she’s a bit of a home body worker type. Upon investigation, my first theory was fairly correct. She’s a political science graduate, plus she’s dating the “sexy bartender”. There’s a certain new swagger in her step. That’s what getting laid does. She thinks it’s weird that people recognize her outside of this restaurant. I mentioned that she’s become a caricature, the tall blond who works at Zack’s. “With the big boobs” added my friend Beata. Britney made a fun gesture at this point. Good times.

A funny lepraconesk man was being uber sarcastic about the fun of selling drugs at work.

I’ve got no prescribed missions tomorrow. The one element that hasn’t been present in my most recent spiritual growth the doing of homework. On the plus side, I’ve written more then usual. The trick is to engage writing into my daily routine, now it’s more sporadic. I can start with my dreams; writing down my first thoughts in the morning. My hope is that my life will simply get so productive that homework will get done on itself. It’s a long shot, but I think it will work. Thinking positively about it when doing yoga might be a good thing. Training the mind to be propelled in certain directions while engaged in physical exertion. Unorthodox, but I feel it’s valid. I think my rejection of homework lies in fear. Fear of exerting myself to further a goal which I’ve always knew was dubious and a generally a divisive institution which serves to maintain the status quo. I’ve always known this and my reaction has always me and those around me, anxiety. My dance with the devil is almost up and it’s going to end in one of three ways. Last minute scramble, fail the classes, repeated eventually or never. Go on with life 2. Most likely scenario, eleventh hour coffee induced scramble, pass the classes. 3. Preemptive attack. Pass the classes strongly. The last one would bring most piece to the world. I think it might be possible. If I’m writing two to four pages a day of blog, I should be able to squeeze out a few ten page essays. My dad is getting really nervous about my school. My mom said they’ve not discussed a number of issues with me. I think dealing with me is trying. All I can do is keep on keeping one.

On a positive note, this will mark the first time since the beginning of my blog that I’ve published submissions two days in a row.



Saturday, December 5, 2009

Review of a review

I’m getting famous! My friend Greg forwarded this “ I saw you “ from the monthly Ottawa arts magazine called Upfront. They’ve been warning people not to try not and be mean and mostly it’s getting more civil, not always though. So I’m proud to announce that Maxim’s Mind has officially received it’s first ever media recognition! 

When: All the time
Where: The world wide interweb
When I lived in Ottawa I let you have (bad) sex with me because I wanted to up my musician number. Now living not- in-Ottawa I read your blog and laugh at how you pile clichéd pretension onto clichéd pretension. Scatting? Drug 'experiences'? Zines? Longboarding? Yoga? Modelling? Really? I am SO glad I met you. You make me and my pals lol-gasm all the time. (I especially like the one where you ‘heal’ the hobo.) 
x x

Thank you kindly for the attention my dear mystery fan, you words of encouragement mean so much to me, and probably not what you intended. Since is the first printed mention of my blog, outside my blog, I took the liberty to slowly sift over each sentence in order to grasp a deep meaning, or perhaps take a journey into your subconscious. Hopefully you’ll emerge, or stay namless and tell me what you thought of my deconstruction of your submission.

“ When: All the time
Where: The world wide interweb”

I take this as the second most positive but also the most troublesome part of the whole piece. Yes my work is available all the time, but the section of the Magazine is called “ I Saw You”. This leads me to believe that my blog is in front of your face “all the time”. Which is cool, I guess, but I don’t have enough posts for that. Maybe your reading things over again, you’ve probably noticed the spelling errors, maybe even grown to love them.

On the next line, I see you’ve combined the two names of the internet. Very clever. I can see I’m dealing with a worthy adversary.

This leads us to the line most telling of your personality.

“When I lived in Ottawa I let you have (bad) sex with me because I wanted to up my musician number.”

I love the end of that one, “I wanted to up my musician number.” I take this to mean, you intended on raising the number of musicians whom you’ve had sexual intercourse with. My inclination is that your being honest here and not satirical; no one would describe themselves in such shallow terms unless it was the truth. However, the end goal of said foray alludes me, but as usual, I’m willing to jest a few possible explanations. Musicians are notoriously scummy people, my first thought is that you were board of life and perhaps desired some hip new sexually transmitted viruses. That was kind of mean, but I’m a musician after all. Did you think that by having sex with multiple musicians, some kind of magical talent powder would rub off onto you? You’ve written in black and white that you slept with me in order to bolster your reputation; that’s the reason why it was bad sex.

“Now living not- in-Ottawa I read your blog and laugh at how you pile clichéd pretension onto clichéd pretension.”

This one warms my heart, I like the double coupling of cliche and pretension. Both words have negative connotation, so whatever the pretension are, they are even more disagreeable now that they are cliches. The fact that you “laugh” at them and feel the need to read through a “pile” of them, begs the question, why are spending so much time reading “cliched pretension”.

I like checking out dating sights as a sociological experiment. If some one uses the self descriptive “I’m a laid back person”, I high tale it, pronto. When reading books, magazine’s or newspapers, you can get a gist of the tone and direction of something, usually in the first sentence. So thanks for reading my blog, what ever your reasons are.

The rest of the note shows an in-depth knowledge of my postings, covering the span of approximately four months.

“Scatting? Drug 'experiences'? Zines? Longboarding? Yoga? Modelling? Really?
Those subjects are scattered through over twenty pages of posts. I’m assuming you didn’t keep checking back in order to write that sentence, so obviously my stories have stuck with you. When you use the term “ cliched pretension” referring to those activities, I wonder if you understand the meaning of either term. Vocal experimentation, drug use, underground magazines, really fast skate boarding and yoga are all humble pursuits and have no common factors or backgrounds, so the aren’t excepted and aren’t cliches. The point of modeling is to represent a superior lifestyle, so that one is inherently pretension, but has no connection to the other activities, so is again, not a cliche. I should remind you that my blog isn’t fiction. I don’t choose the things that I’m passionate about and write about, they strike a fire in me and I tell it like it is. Thanks for taking so much time to learn about me though.

Things get really positive again at the end.

“I am SO glad I met you. You make me and my pals lol-gasm all the time. (I especially like the one where you ‘heal’ the hobo.)
x x”

By using capitals, I take it you mean to say the opposite, that you’re unhappy you’ve met me. Unfortunately, that completely contradicts the next two sentences. The first of which suggests that for whichever reason, you and the multiple people you’ve shown it to, read my blog, “all the time”. This means my audience is much large then I thought it was, so right on. I’ll do my best to keep you all “lol-gasaming.” You throw some quotation marks around the word “heal”, perhaps to further the sarcastic tone of the note. That story is one of the wildest things that has ever happened to me, I’ve captivated many audiences with that one. You start to sound much more like a friend at the end, the quotation marks are gladly accepted since, 1. I was high on mushroom at the time and 2. I’d never done anything like that before. 3. Didn’t really know what I was doing.

The two “x”s are a nice touch. Xs at the end of a note mean kiss, I appreciate it. And I appreciate the note in general. I smoked a joint a few hours ago and couldn’t sleep. You’ve given me some fantastic subject matter to write about. I have a feeling that you and your friends will be reading this one too, so hopefully, whoever you are, you can send me a note, telling me how I can improve the next one. Maybe you can suggest some adventures so my blog will no longer be “cliched pretensions”.

Love you all, especially whoever wrote the note.


ps. I wonder what you thought would come out of writing that?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

December Happenings

Update. December already, wild. The play was incredible, packed houses 7 of 8 nights, sold loads of CDs and made some great new friends. On the last night of the run, some pretty wild things went down. Waiting for a bus going to the cast party, a drunk prostitute took a strong liking to me. She repeatedly offered me her services and showed me a preview of her wares. Aboard the bus, I performed some banjo breakdowns for a group of drunk girls from New Brunswick. I initiated a group sing along of the theme song from “fresh prince of bel-air”. Good times were had by all.

The party was organized for the ending of another play that was going on at Arts Court. It was a contemporary play by an Irish playwright. It received glowing reviews but the directory told something along the lines of “I’d rather have shit reviews and full houses like you guys.” I discussed this with a few actors and everyone agreed. We got pretty poor reviews, but had over capacity houses most nights. In one review, the writer complained that all the characters are stereotypical, especially the cop who “came right out of american television”. A real live police officer came to the play and he said the character was “perfectly on point”.

So the party was going along smoothly, Matt and I were discussing the new magazine and themes were presenting themselves. It’s looking like a big part of the magazine will discuss the transition away from traditional organized religions into what ever the next phases is of personal spirituality. Chelsea came over to bring me an end of run gift, and things didn’t go so well. There was some wild drama and we are no longer an official couple, but we are still very close. I’ll be acting in a music video she’s making and she’ll continue to join me on stage on Saturdays and at the Tuesday Open mikes.

I certainly did drink that night. Annie from the play came by as the party was ending and Matt and I went to her house. All I really remember is doing some unconventional break dancing then trying to sleep and puking multiple times. As the sun came up, I went to sleep on Annie’s fuzzy green couch. Started to wake up around 1pm and read the book “Queer” by William Burrows, while letting the hangover slowly recede. Around 4 pm I found my way to Chelsea’s; we enjoyed a fire and each others company.

I hung out at home for a few hours before heading downtown to Bob Primo’s house. The sick sick sicks are moving along well. The band is going to perform all of my solo folk/blues stuff. We’ve invested in a PA and an old Gretch guitar is coming my way. Bob is a professional drummer and it’s a pleasure to be working with him. We’ll have the whole band coming out on Saturday’s. Having Danny Devil back is pleasure as well. He's been living in London Ontario for the last year and has picked up quite a few cool tricks since he's been gone. Welcome back dude! The Sicks will be playing on Saturday December 11 with rockalilly. I’m also playing with billy boon on Friday the fourth and with the Sin Sisters, on december 16th .

I’m currently seeking a band name. The band is the merging of my solo folk/blues/swing career and my old psychobilly band, the Sick Sick Sicks. Right now we’re going for Maxim & the..... Using a french name might be cool, but keeping the “and the”.
I write about traveling, maybe rambling, wandering, drifting, movement, nocturnal, nomadic, nymph, trees, earth, action, movement, fluidity, wave, vibration, nutrients, spirituality, spirituality, recognition of personal holiness. Maybe Maxim & the mystics, mystiques, or mistycos (greek). The possibilities are being created in order to express my sound in countless ways, while making it marketable and assessable. The punk/metal feel has been worn out, and a new, eery, louisiana-sleazy-greasy-jazz-bluesabilly sound has emerged. My voice and the bass are no longer overpowered by the drums and guitar.

Good cover’s are a guaranteed way to make a lot of money. Learning three hours of recognizable material means playing casino’s and private corporate gigs. I’ve realized I need to treat my music like any other trade. Having as much material as possible will improve my chances of furthering my original material and being able to put money in the pockets of other cool musicians. I’ve got the band coming on Saturday to the Rainbow, I’ve got a good feeling about it.

To get off on an alternate tangent. The somewhat reactionary approach to my life is started wear thin. My good friend Josh told me about his morning routine and it offered me some real perspective. His ritual of stretching and praying in the morning instilled a sense of direction, purpose and centeredness. I think it’s time to better design the way I live. Kurt Vonnegut said “ I love sleeping”, Mark Twain spent all his day in bed, where he wrote his best work; I’m happy my literary friends enjoy it as much as I do. It's really a matter of school. I have to good reason to work hard at it, grades are meaningless to me. But I should be able to pass my classes without the usual last ditch effort. To approach it like a well played game of tetris, align the pieces in advance and let them fall into place.

So, the ideal thing to do when waking up is, probably break dancing. Taking the time to make myself happy and moving forward on the goals that are important to me. I’m thinking, wake up, wash, drink water, eat an apple or something small to cut the hunger pains and get some energy, then light a candle, meditate, do yoga and then a serious of break dance maneuvers which I would record and improve upon. I think it’s time to challenge myself. The trickiest part is waking up and doing it. I love sleeping and spending hours in bed. This will sound strange, but I love being hungover one and a while, not the puking part, but everything else. Drifting in and out of conciseness, being wrapped in warmth, having time to read because anything else is impossible, gradually feeling better, trying to eat, drinking water and watching the sun set through your window as the last filaments of headache and nausea fade, mentally preparing yourself for another night of partying.

Plus, there’s nothing that says I can’t go back to sleep after my morning rituals. Although I think I’d be energized to tackle whichever project that lay before me. Then it’s time spend maybe 30 to 45 minutes eating and reading the paper. Then greet the day, feel the world while going on a jog with rufus. Upon return, bathing, then do the business of the day, e.i. spend an hour doing homework or writing for the magazine. Conceivably, If I did do that hour of homework a day, (not including reading) I could easily get straight As and possibly contribute to the fields which I’m studying. After that, eat again and read a novel. The next move would be an hour of practicing and furthering my music career. At that point, it probably wouldn’t be much past 1pm, ( the time I’ve woken up the past few days). And I would have already focused on the growth of my physical, intellectual, spiritual and emotional sides.

By doing that, I can better support myself and others and best of all, I have the late afternoon to do the stuff I love, (and do anyway) like getting stoned, going to the gym, engaging cool people, winter cycling, urban snowboarding (that should be an article in the new magazine) writing this in this journal and about spiritual stuff, going to museums, playing organized sports, going on dates, and generally having fun. The only down side to this whole operation is that I’ll give up my great joy of sleeping in. Maybe that’s my person sacrifice in order to better know the divine. And it’s not such a bad price to pay, and there’s always naps.

Since my spiritual rebirth a year and half ago, I’ve been experimenting with broad notions of maximalism as a lifestyle and I’ve lived out some my greatest dreams. I’ve became a professional model, supported myself with my art, toured the country and lived downtown with an incredible girl. I’m on the verge of graduating from university, but as usual in regards to school, I’m enjoying it but barely scrapping by. I've said this to myself many times before, I should engage it fully. By this I mean start working on projects as they are assigned and not moments before they are due (or not at all). I won't be able to accomplish this feat without rearranging my lifestyle. To properly engage a project, I should fully engage the day.

To do that, I need to reduce the clutter and uncertainty of my life, starting with my immediate surroundings . Time to create my own personal temple, like much of in the Indian population has. A place where the strongest vibes can flow. A place to celebrate the marvelous things and recover from the low points. Having room to breathe and stretch is the most important thing, because the body is the temple. I want my temple to fly and radiate like I know it can.

My friend Bashu was asking me a serious of personal question for purposes unknown. Question like what were the major turning points of your life. He noted that most people talked about things that happened to them, where as mine were mostly things I did or that I set into motion. My plans were broad enough to incorporate life altering events, such as “being in BC without a plan”. Now I’ll attempt another turning point, starting with the organization of my room. I’ve lived with no real structure, but didn't get a lot done. In Parcsville BC, I was living in a luscious estuary by the ocean, where food and shelter came extremely easy. The result was that I had all the time in the world to do whatever I wanted. I stashed my gear under a tarp and spent days doing every wonderful thing under the sun. Eventually I stumbled upon a hot yoga studio, a temple which I moved into. Doing yoga three times I day, I transformed my body and my consciousness. I slept on the floor of a shower stall on two yoga mats with my comfy horse blanket. It was a business, so we kept it clean and useful for others. I want my temple to be like that.

I’m having visions about the possibilities of my room. It’s a decent sized room with clean walls and good pressed wood floors. My own personal maxim, is to always be expanding mind and body. The universe is expanding, might as well go with it. The way I’ve been doing this, is through yoga, breakdancing, reading, writing, performing and exploring my body and music. The temple of Maxim should propel and reflect a devotion to those activities. I think mirrors are a start, to view my body as I attempt those physical practices and to hone my performance abilities. I’ll be able to check my yoga postures, work my standup routine, model breakdancing gear while bringing in light and space.

Perhaps I should sacrifice further. Since my sister moved away, a big bedroom upstairs has opened up. I could make downstairs a studio, open to my parents, teach them yoga, and sleep upstairs. Although the privacy of the basement room is a bonus. We do own a futon, I think that’s the ticket. Time to sell or give my bed away. It sleep quite comfortably, even when it’s in couch form. From there, I see the books and a media/work space in a corner, maybe an alter and empty everywhere else. I think I’m onto something. Having it as an open space mean’s it’s available to transform into anything that could into that space. With adequate storage place, the room can become a DIY dream. Recording, broadcasting, silkscreening, meetings, partying, crafting, creating and hosting art jams. Every house in the western world has good space that’s going to waste, my room will no longer be among them

I think the underlying notion of this exercise is the importance of praising yourself. To look at yourself as an incredible being, capable of endless possibilities and to not accept bad destructive habits. It’s utterly important to examine, cherish, nourish and propel your talents. It’s about giving yourself the opportunity and encouragement to know and understand yourself. Achieving a a goal is less about planning then attacking and more about entering into a lifestyle which propagates and sustains your goals. When we treat ourselves like the spiritual beings we are, we remove all opposition to excellence and propel ourselves into greatness. Do it, but stay grounded. Always breath slowly and maintain balance.

Love you all,


Monday, November 23, 2009

Twenty to three on a monday morning, perfect time for a blog

I woke up at three pm, Sunday afternoon, so there's really no chance of sleep for at least another hour. This is often my favourite time to be awake and alive in general because things seems to stop making sense. I spent the last five minutes watching this guys . There tones of good things to read and work to be done, and I watch lovely movies like Boogie Nights.

Maybe it's update time, haven't done that in a little while.

1. The EP, I released the disk 11 days ago and have gone through 50 so far. Mostly sold them, did give a handful away to people. The disk makes me want to record again with my control over the project, it was done quickly and sounds decent, but doesn't represent me as much as I'd like it. The picture on the cover, however, is awesome. It's clean and sharp; Rufus and I look really good in it. The songs are cool too, it is worthy of me, but I need to record more. I feel like I'm moving into a country jazz feel more then old time. It's wonderful to have a product though. It's an excuse to put on an incredible show at the Elmdale and a cool one at the folklore centre as well as having something to sell at the Mechanics ville monologues.(more on that later)

The release was one of the coolest shows I've been to in ages. Kenny started things off and blew the crowd away. His writing is captivating and his voice is breath taking as well as being a well rounded guitar and harmonica player. His choices of songs all have intense plots as well as great melodies. I'm going to do everything thing in my power to get that guy playing more. I have a feeling it won't need much work before he reaches critical mass. He'll get to a point were enough important people think he's amazing that success will be seamless.

Andre "Badgie" Blutea went second and was quite funny. He open up his quirky personality and everyone fell in love. He was being honest about his life and his songs and everyone dug it. He's a strange dude that I love and am glad I was able to share him with an audience.

A few blogs ago I spoke of Ingrid Gatin. We'll I still hadn't gotten around to booking a show for her and my anxiety surrounding the issue was rising. In the end, her Ottawa date that happened to be on the same day, was canceled, so she joined my bill. Her grace and beauty filled the room as she graced us with her sultry voice and inspired accordion playing. She's an incredible performer who's on her way to the top of the Canadian folk scene, mark my words. It was an honour sharing the stage with her.

I had a ball performing for my friends and family. It kinda felt like a birthday party, only the celebration was more deserving. I made this rad disk. Calculating the take, I figure 40 + people were there. And that was with minimal promotion. Makes me want to promote the hell out of the next one.

That was two thursdays ago, I had to miss rehearsal for...

2. The Mechanicville Monologues.

I'm sure I wrote about the play last time. We'll it's begun and every night is wicked fun. Three out of four nights have been sold out and we have another four days to go. On the first night, Annie pretending to be a drunk, pulled down a pole holding up the stage. I flung out and caught it at the last minute. Good times.

The audiences are fully enjoying it and I'm selling tones of CDs. Going like hot cakes. Ran out the other day, need to print more. Being an opener is a bit disconcerting since usually most people pay attention to me, but I've got a good sound system and good instruments so I concentrate on making the best music possible. And I've been getting compliments every night. A woman named Margaret Lawrence was quite captivated with me. She was somewhat inebriated, but quite fun.

I'm looking forward to the rest of the show, It's rewarding yet challenging and I know I'm making a good contribution to a greater performance. I hope to work with the company again and Liza the produce has spoken of helping me out with my career. Great people, great play. Check it out if you can, running from Wednesday to Saturday at the Carleton Tavern.

3. The Magazine. This came out of left field, well, more out of this blog actually. My writing has been improving because of this blog and I've been pining to write something with a bit more substance and staying power. The meetings I've had with my friends so far have been mostly giggle-fests but we've come up with some decent ideas. I've started formatting an online version and it's an enjoyable exercise. My first introduction is what I plan on contributing and the general direction.

The work so far can be found at

My friends Matt, Marc, Clyde, John Aaron and Lesley will be contributing on a variety of subjects. We'll be going for a concrete version of the publication eventually and probably putting on a concert for it's release. The process is a lot of fun, especially the feeling of my closest friends all pulling together on something.

4. My girlfriend Chelsea has enlisted me to be in a music video tomorrow morning at 8 Am. I can probably get a lift from my pops, so that ain't so bad.

Sleepy time,


Friday, November 20, 2009

Greetings and salutation. I just read that last one, and jesu,um crow that's some dark and angsty shit. That's what I'd call backing into a corner. Luckily, my outlet was this constructive black book and the glorious internet. I spoke to one of my profs, he turned out to be anxtious for the conversation, I think I'll be hanging around the offices more. The papers I owed for his class I can hand in at my leisure. I've got one more class to contend with and prof #1 speaks highly of #2. The truth of the matter is that I am busy as jesus christ on a bicycle, so much so that I've got repeatedly skip English class in order to "do some research on Hip Hop". Seriously. Psyche, It's that a working musician of my caliber can't always afford to lag on the latest breakdancing moves and hip hop news. All the music that I'm playing publicly is starting to dig into my "me" time. Hah. I did managed to get stoned tonight though. First time in a week. I came to the realization that I've known I've had the best family and friends since the age of two. For the last many years, we've been getting stoned and doing silly things, Now we've made a magazine.

It's called "Dragon Cock: A gamer's guide to fantasy role-playing games."

It will feature.

Rants, Raves and Wrecked 'em's by Maxim

Scat-Sociological comentary with Sr. Pancake and Whore Analyst, Marc-Andre

Conversation avec des non-bilangue.

Stories by Matt

Measurements by Clyde

Illicit profesization from J. A.

-Angry at nothing. Picture an old man yelling at a broken clock, ect....

-Bad Mad Libs.

-Age/Gender/Ethnicity/Religious/Culturally Specific Advice/Hilarious Hate.

-Horror Scope ( I need to copy right that one)

-Funkdementals ( I'm on band name fire!)

-Threats from the Undead.

"Dickens is fucking pissed off!"
"Washington is fucking pissed off!"
"Mandella if fucking, oh wait...."

Stoner Jesus.

I think I'll do a stoner jesus bit now.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mid november update

Thanks to those of you who've been reading and enjoying this blog. I think the reason I write is the same reason I play music, dance, make cave art ect. Because I can. Because it's cool to extend your mind onto your environment. Posterity is also cool. Creating art or working out thoughts is the moment when the fluid energy of the mind is transformed into physical reality, even if it's tiny bites of information across a page. It is fascinating to find out how minds work. We're addicted to watching lives of fictional characters everyday. We strive to find out how they deal with various situations and each other. It's cool going back over old journals and blogs to see how I've grown. We often walk into the same traps of bad habits or patterns, to experience the same hangover or stress filled term paper. As long as the overall picture is improving, those negative behaviours are tolerable, but can sour the positive outcomes in a big way. I've been experiences mild emotional distress and on the same repetitive note, school is at the root. This blog is therapeutic because I can honest about my dysfunctional behaviour. This negative cycle has been going on since I've stepped foot in the establishment called "school".

Since day one I've put off, neglected, discarded the responsibilities associated with getting good grades. Basically I don't need anyone telling me that I'm smart, I know that already. However, it was my parents duty, however futile, to instil fundamental work habits into my psyche. This caused a tension in my life like no other. Year after year, I'd wouldn't do the big projects, then lie to both my teachers and parents about how I'd either done the work or that none was assigned. A foreboding sense of dread crept into my belly as the days wore on. Eventually my parents would stumble across various late assignments. As they fingered the dreaded mess of papers overflowing from my binders or bags, the knot in my stomach would clench. They would yell, I would cry, they'd help me with the work then we'd repeat the whole process every few months.

I didn't actually get accepted to university when I first applied. I graduated from high school on time, then did a victory lap to "boost my grades". That last semester of highs school I feel in love with a girl that I would be with for three years. I also branched out by joining the choir and the swim team. The funny thing was that most of my grades were still in the low sixties. I got rejected from Carleton University, aka "last chance U". My mother would have none of it though. Suddenly pamphlets for the "enriched support program", started popping up in my living room. Through my mother's due vigilance, I hopped through the right hoops and ended up in the equivalent of the special Ed class in university. It meant that I couldn't take a full class load and that there were extra opportunities available to me. The "first year seminar" I found infuriating. There was a lot of hand holding. I skipped many classes, did the bare minimum of work and ended passed the class, somehow. That's basically been my style since. A few english classes and my music performance class have been the exception to that model of mediocracy.

Not that I was an all around bad student, when It comes to classes, I usually kick ass. I've had a couple of brilliant professors, who've I've become decent friends with and poor profs, whom I've shamed publicly. In environments of progressive or at least learned thought, I'm always building, furthering and challenging the conversation. I've never had a problem with tossing out an idea while being able to back it up with various points from the book. So why is it like pulling teeth to write an essay? I think it's because the purpose of School work is usually not to inspire, but to prove that one can create a piece of work that fits into the appropriate format and guidelines. It's a contrived effort to bring forth good grades. If a paper is riddled with spelling, grammar and formatting errors, the brilliance of the ideas put across are trivialized. A structurally sound paper can say sweet f*#$ all still get an proportionally high grade. The counter argument would state that one who can formulate a concept in a more presentable manner has the advantage over a poorly constructed thought. My personal experience is that passion is necessary for the constructive materialization of scholarly expression. That last sentence was perhaps denser then it needed to be. But after four years of university, most examples of my writing were poorly expressed. It was the act of blogging, of creating sentences and paragraphs that were important to me, that improved my skills.

I'm ages behind on my reading and writing for the two classes I have tomorrow morning, but I'm getting such a kick out of writing this blog, I just can't stop.

I need to speak to my teachers one on one, and soon. If I don't I'll just keep messing every thing up. Failing these two classes would be a terrible waste of money and time, but time to a lesser extent. I've enjoyed the classes and have learned a fair amount. But if I only wanted to learn and not had this society desire to prove to others that I've learned, I would have simply gone to all the classes and not paid tuition. But my parents saved for years so that I could get a degree...

Alright, I think that's it for now. It's 2 11 Am, and apparently theres a meteor shower outside. I checked a few moments ago and saw nothing. Light pollution is a bitch.

This blog is un edited. School starts at ten, maybe I'll do it then.



Sunday, November 1, 2009

Autumn rizing.

This is published simultaneously on Facebook and blogger.

Hey folks, happy November. I'm always a fan of the months changing. New cycles excite me. I dig fall because it's death. It's the end of one structure, to be torn down and reborn. A blank slate. A time to wipe away sins and indiscretions and start fresh.

Here are some cool things that I've been engaged in recently.

1. Solo Ep. The new CD is finished. Now it's a matter of getting it reproduced and online. My ideal plan is to have the record available to download, paying what you will/can. You'll be able to stream it on myspace presently. I'm quite pleased with the outcome. Seeing as it's my first official release, I've kept it simple. It sounds exactly as I would sitting in front of you playing and singing.

I'm having an official release party next week at the Elmdale tavern. 5$. November 12th. And it 19+, so get a fake ID if your underage. This is a fairly monumental occasion for me. I've been performing for about ten years, and now I've started taking things more seriously. This marks my first of many releases and it's gonna be a beautiful evening. The other musicians are talented and good friends of mine, I'm sure Ken Voita and Andre Bluteau won't disappoint.

Elmdale Tavern
1084 Wellington St
Ottawa, ON K1Y 2Y5
(613) 728-2848

As well as being able to take a piece of me home, I'll be sending the songs to folk festivals around the world. When I'm done school, I'll be going on a long tour.

2. School. It kinda sucks my soul. I'm still incapable or unwilling to plan out rational work schedules when it comes to school. Then I get super stressed and hand in a sub par piece of work. I'm quite enjoying the classes though. The discussions are usually quite enthralling and my teachers are informative and concise. I'm looking forward to being finished.

3. Mechanicsville monologues.

Mechanicsville is a blue collar neighborhood in the west end of Ottawa. It's notorious for whores and gangs, but it's getting better. Seems like all the trouble in Ottawa is moving to the fringes. This play is a series of monologues from the perspective of people living there over the last sixty years. There's battered women, trannies, a cop, a taxi driver and an array of richly crafted characters. I'm playing banjo, harmonica, fiddle, resonator, mandolins and hand drum as well as singing between and during the monologues. My friend Matt Smith asked me to perform and I'm indebted to him; the practices have been awesome so far. The writing and performances are highly compelling. There's a lot of spirit in this play, it's just one person speaking at a time, but it's not dry at all. The actors are all fantastic and It's inspiring me to write some really cool music, I recommend checking it out. Plus it's performed at the Carleton Tavern, so it's interactive and you can drink while watching!

5. Sick Sick Sicks/Unnamed new swing band.

The Sicks rose briefly to open for Big John Bates, and it was a wicked show. I threw together 6 musicians at the last minute, all in suits. Photo's and videos will come eventually. The end result it that the Sicks will continue in one capacity or another and that I'm starting a slick swing band with my friend Bob Primo. I don't know what the Sicks will sound like, but It'll be cool. The plan for the swing band is to have three hours of Louis Prima style jazz and swing then some cool originals. I'll keep you informed.

4. HOLAS, Humanitarian Organization of Latin American Students. I met the prez and Co prez at Critical Mass a few weeks back and decided to check out their meeting. Every Monday night they offer salsa dance lessons and every Friday before the general meeting, they offer Spanish and Portuguese lessons, all on a donation basis. Their two main goals are the promotion of Latin American culture and humanitarian projects in the Americas. They've grown substantially in the last two years and are now on the verge of legalization into NGO. I quite enjoyed the Spanish lessons, the meeting and the group of people. Everyone is encouraged to attend meetings, lessons and events. This is a great group of dedicated students who have an awwsome time getting good things done. I'll be blogging for them.

5. I'll probably be doing some runway modeling for Fashion Cures A la Mode, in support of Ovarian Cancer. These shows are cool for people/clothing watching and it's a good cause.

I think that's it for now, Come on the 12th.

Love you all,


Friday, October 23, 2009

Alright. The natural ebb and flow of existence never ceases to amaze me. I think about the world spinning, the universe expanding and each one of my atom vibrating at various frequencies. I'm in a joyous mood right now and it's because I've been smoking pot.

I woke up late this morning, it was troublesome. Around noon. I had no particular game plan for the day. Only that I had lot's of things to do. My main thought was of the two essays due on Tuesday. I jumped into reading the novel which I'm writing about. Finding it dry and tedious, my brain was a hot bed for various other tangents and plans. A number of issues dominated my head. The first was that I wasn't really finding anything in the book to write about. The second was that I should be writing a list for all the things I needed to do. Then in no real order came the rest of my thoughts. My friend friend Ingrid Gatin asked for some help a few weeks ago booking shows. She's an incredible musicians and I'd love to share the stage with her. I sent out a few emails looking for shows and haven't really followed up. I realized the dates were approaching and that I hadn't really done anything about it. There is still time. Her music can be found at

Another thought was to my girlfriend's phone. Three days ago it was stolen or lost and it's been a major stress on her life. It was lost at an my band's concert so I took on the responsibility of contacting those who might have accidentally taken it. There's a 100$ reward by the way. As I said to Chelsea I don't really care about the phone, but I am bothered that she's bothered. Another thought was that I need to contact my band. I threw together seven musicians for the sick sick sicks and the show went well. After they'd all left, I didn't get paid very much. I wanted to tell them they did a great job and I hope to keep jamming. I intent to rent a PA with our pay so we can have real practices. Hopefully at least some of the members are reading this. I also thought of my friend John Aaron, who just left for a tour of eastern Europe, good luck buddy. I also thought about being Wolverine for Halloween, so I need to get some big muscles, fast. I also plan on buying a used mac book from a friend. I think that's all. However, I had about twelve pages to write for Tuesday, so I started reading.

And I'll be honest when it comes to school assignments, I've never tried that hard. In a class situation I'm always one of the best. I answer correctly to more questions then most of my peers and have great relationships with teachers. When I've been enthralled by the professor or the materiel, I also do really well. However left to my own devices, I dick off 'till the last minute, hand in some sub par work, then throw it out since I know I could have done a much better job. It's not the best system, but I've read and learned a lot. And at the end of this year I'll be graduating.

It's been fascinating observing my mother who's just gone back to school. She's doing a masters in library management. She loves school and has dreamed of being a librarian since she was a child. She's organized, works hard and has been getting all As or A+s. I recall being under her tutelage as a child and kicking ass on book reports. Having an authority to guide me through all the seemed to be more effective when pursuing a goal I cared nothing about. At various points she'd inspire me to vigorously devote myself to a project. That enthusiasm generally dried up in about thirty five minutes. Getting good grades has been an uphill battle since I was a kid. I guess I'd just prefer to roll down.

The fact of the matter is that I don't and have never, really cared about proving myself academically. I know I'm smart and that I enjoy learning. That's something no one can take away, no matter how poorly I fail in school.

As with money, school grades are a construction, simultaneously compared with success. Once again, I don't need to prove to anything that I'm successful, so I don't need much money. I have a clear memory in my mind of my mother fearing for my future should I get a degree. She saw a “string of low paying jobs” presumably for the rest of my life. Her premonitions have mostly come true. Except that now I've realized it's more important to engage in what makes you happy then to try to drag yourself up the social ladder. The indoctrination about the importance of a degree has been successful. The proof is in the punch, I'm doing the absolute least I can to squeak out a that prestigious piece of paper. (Just kidding, I take part in most of my classes) University is highly tied to class structure though. When I finish, I'll be a "professional" rather then a laborer. I'll have the magical key to many more opportunities. That's why W. Bush went to Yale and there are so few ethnic minorities in my classes. (Things are getting much better in the latter case).

Long and short, grades are silly, but learning is cool. But being educated is great thing. Even being elitist in various fields can be beneficial to the world's knowledge. But being good at school in general negligible, since it's only about proving you have the capacity to regurgitate and not absorb. More on this in later blogs.

My current serious of regurgitational exercises showcase a book called “the Vicar of Wakefield”. It's about a rich Vicar who goes busts and Vics it up for a poorer community, being social lowered himself. Things get worse and worse throughout the book. He tries to advance his family into higher esteem and fails miserably. (His fortunes picks up a bit at the end, I think, I wasn't really paying attention anymore.

My proff says it's all about ways of thinking. The Vicar is down with pedantry. The learned type who likes to discuss and who's type of smarts is derived from books. The book observes past ways of thinking such as Wisdom, and future ways like science. It's about the enlightenment and growth of reason. I'm going to compare it to Robinson Crusoe, the book about a castaway. I'm not really sure how yet. I made a bunch of notes about God and Crusoe for my first essay. That will probably be my central exploration. No point in doing too much work.

I was reading and most of it was sticking, then all the sudden there's a big party at the jail where the vicar is being held, then nothing makes sense. New characters burst in from no where and chaos ensues. It didn't really made sense, but there was nice poetic justice. The Vicar can't adapt to the new ways of rational thinking, so his life goes down the drain. Someone who's secretly been doing a scientific experiment on the Vicar, saves the day. A decent book.

It made me think of other books that have maintained a popular status over the years, and the ones that I think will be most remembered from our times. They don't have strong characters or plots it's that they artfully capture attitudes and notions of their present situations.

That leads me to the one television show that I watch on a daily basis, the Sopranos. It encapsulates our tendency towards wealth and status, regardless of broader consequences. Pauly overhears that a friend of his elderly mother has cash stashed under her mattress. He breaks in, digs around, she catches him, she starts to call the cops and he ends up suffocating her with a pillow. The genius of the scene is the ever present crucifix that dangles loose during the altercations. Our power structure and culture in general remains faithful to Christianity, yet acts in direct opposition to Christian ideology. I've done minimal research on the subject of wealth in the bible, but it's explicitly clear in a number of situation that Jesus Christ is against it.

I googled “bibles verses wealth” . The first site has twenty or thirty good ones.

I like the imagery in the first one.

"Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.'"
-Matthew 19:23-24

I dig this one because it sounds like when Jesus was inspired by Eastern monks.

"Jesus answered, 'If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.'"
-Matthew 19:21

I finished the last forty or so pages of the novel, watched most of my program then all the sudden it was three o'clock. I didn't really feel like working anymore and I've had the notion of working out for some time. I recently got a new student card, so I could go to the gym again. I like the endorphins that get released when working out. Plus wolverine has really big muscles. I have more energy when I smoke grass, plus I like smoking grass, so I smoked some grass. I walked Rufus and my head cleared up. All those competing notions floated away. I noticed the beautiful foliage and thought about the water in my skin as it's exposed to colder air. I played with Rufus more then I usually do and stopped to smell a wild rose. Then I got in some sweats and started jogging towards the gym. I saw my pop on the way and he asked me where I was going. The parents never notice when I'm stoned anymore. I think it's because I don't smoke as much at one siting. In high school, the trend was to smoke huge fatties. I always got too stoned. Now I lay a 8th of a gram in my pipe and I'm still stoned for hours. The jog was lovely, through my fingers get cold fast. I think they lack circulations. I'm comfortable right now in shorts and a t, but my fingers are still cold.

I took the long way to the gym and jogged right in. It was nice not dealing with the change room. Starting off with some yoga, I realized it looked sweetly out of place in the mirror. I ran into my friend Dana and he showed me some exercises. They worked quite well. He's a fascinating character. Always wears bright or flashy clothes. He used to have multiple watches hanging from his waist. Now his facial and arm hair shaved in intricate patterns. He said many people negate their unique traits in order to project a more broad appeal. But when you follow your heart and do it with gusto, you get to know people in a more in depth way.

Another piece of wisdom that he departed with me was the notion of an “open heart”. When most people some people say “ I love you” it means they love only you. Open hearted love from one would be happy with what ever makes the other happy. It's a notion that doesn't really fit into our monogamous culture. But forever isn't real. He talked about being in a room with multiple people he maintains romantic connection with, and it being cool. I told him about my companion Maggie Sue, whom I lived with in the spring of '08. I bought groceries and cleaned the place, she paid the rent and we lived in bliss.

He also showed me pictures of tattoo's he done on people. Ergonomically designed to stretch with the muscle structure, I think he's onto a new trend. I liked the frog who's hips were strategically placed on the side of a leg, so that it jumps when the knee is unfolded. Dana hosts an art jam every Thursday night at his place. I'll get you connected if your interested. Your free to smoke, drink, be merry and be inspired by all the art that's being created.

I got back home and since we smoked up again, was in no mood for homework. Instead I stumbled upon an erotic story I'd started a few months ago. It begins with a ten year old boy spying on his 12 year old sister's slumber party. The girls get into the booze and things get wild. I'm not sure if I'll post that one or not. I have a collection of bizarre stories, maybe I'll publish them someday.

After that, I called my dear friend Alex Vlad and it seems the black mac book is coming my way. He's also getting me into some grand hip hop show tonight. You rock Alex. I smell a review....

So then I started blogging I guess. I think I started around 5 and It's seven thirty now. My parents have come and now there's a bunch of kids playfully yelling outside my house. Chelsea called and she's still freaked out, but getting mellower.

My thoughts wander to the weekend. I'm busy tomorrow afternoon and probably Sunday afternoon. If I'm gonna do this stuff. I guess it'll be tomorrow, Sunday morning and Monday during the day. If not, there's always the drop box.


Ps. It's now twenty past eight. I just edited the piece. This smoking and writing thing is pretty fun. I don't recall working so steadily on a piece of writing. Peace!