Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Guessing Game

Guess how many times this guy has called me since he stood me up?

And NO, I have NOT answered or returned any of his calls. See if you can guess the magic number. The winner will be awarded an undetermined prize that will most certainly be something entirely worthless and or useless.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Walk at Sunnyside Park, Toronto

I went for a walk in the park yesterday and got a few shots of early spring in Toronto. Click on the thumbnails below to view full picture.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Courteous or Rude?

I have never forgotten the lessons I learned in Sunday School. It doesn’t matter how long ago that was, those lessons for daily living still occupy a prime spot in my brain and have become the essence of what I believe in. Such simple things as: do unto others as you would have them do unto you; try to give a helping hand whenever you can; practise what you preach; live and let live; what will be will be; walk on a crack, break your mother’s back; what goes around, comes around; those who throw stones, shouldn’t live in glass towers and on and on.

I actually do believe in the idea that if we all did one nice thing for someone else each day then this world would be a better place. I always say thank you when someone holds a door, hands me my purchases, or takes my order at a restaurant. I never bud in line, try to give room for cars to merge onto the highway and leave enough room so that the car in front, isn’t blinded by my lights when driving at night.

As I’m sure you all know, I live in an apartment building. It’s a huge building with approx 400 suites. The tenants all park underground.

The other day I left for work and was in an especially cheerful mood because the sun was shining and I felt great.

I proceeded to back out of my parking spot and headed toward the door. At the moment that I had just started to move forward; the in door started opening. I quickly moved as far over to the right as I could to allow the oncoming car to get by me and I stopped to wait.

The car entering the garage wasn’t sure if he could manoeuvre between the post to his right and my car. I knew there was plenty of room so I just stayed where I was and waited patiently for the car to enter. His car was blocking the exit, so there really was no place else for me to go.

He finally made it around the obstacle course and smiled and waved at me as he passed. Right behind him another car came whizzing in. The woman drove tediously around the post and as she passed me, looked straight in my eye, shook her head and mouthed the word, asshole.

I was shocked. Here I was thinking that I was being polite and courteous by waiting for the cars to enter rather than trying to get to the exit which would have impeded their progress, only to be sworn at by some twit.

I think the timing was what turned my gesture from courteous to rude from the perspective of driver number two. She probably was blaming me for driver one taking so long to enter, when really it was just his lack of driving skills and had nothing to do with me at all.

Below is a picture of the garage and the placement of my parking spot, where I backed out and where I stopped. I think you will see what I mean.
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Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Picture Essay

On the advise of Mick, I finally submitted one of my pictures and an accompanying essay to A Pictures Worth and my Winter's Sunset photo has been posted on the site for March 2005. I wrote a little essay to go with it, so please visit David's site and check it out. It may inspire you to do the same. The site showcases a new beautiful photo with story every day.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Spring in G Minor

I am so happy, so very happy, I am so happy, I could sing and dance! La, la, la la laaaaaaa, la la la la laaaaaaa, dum dum de de dum dum dum deeeeeeeee. A full symphony with choral back up plays loudly in my head as my eyes open and I am tempted to spring to my feet, do a hand spring towards the door, two pirouettes and three high kicks on my way to the bathroom because I am soooooo happy, but I don’t.

That’s not the Shelly that everyone knows. I can’t act like that. My mom and daughter would have a heart attack if I acted like I was the lead in a Hollywood Musical when I awoke rather than the in a daze, stumbling, scratching my belly, zombie that I usually am.

So I resist the urge to spring lightly down the hall. I wish I had animated words this morning because that one back there, you know which one, spring…yes spring would be springing like a slinky across the page. I’ll stop thinking about the possibilities because I don’t have animated words and I don’t want you to be disappointed when you realise the possibilities of what I could deliver, had I the know how and skills of a geek goddess. Rather than disappoint you by filling you in on all of my untapped creativity, I’ll keep it to myself and tell you that today I am FANTABULOUSLY HAPPY!!!

Why am I so happy? I’m not sure. Is it because along with the symphony and choral back up in my head, there is a warm breeze with the smell of retracting winter sliding through my window to my nostrils? Or is it because on that breeze, the happy, bright song of the birdies is floating in the room and landing in my ears? That was it. It was the song of the birds and I was sleeping beauty, lying there in wait of my prey. Oh wait, no not prey, I mean my Prince Charming. He came to me and knelt by my bed of stone and then gave me the sweetest, most loving, gentle kiss. A kiss to wake the dead. A kiss to raise my hopes and energy from the depths of winter that would make me ALIVE again. Oh wait it wasn’t Prince Charming at all, I remember now. It was just Molly, my cat. Oh well, who cares, I’m alive! I’m awake and it’s SPRING!!!!

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Where I've been

Sorry for the absence. I didn't want to jinx anything by writing about it ahead of time and I've been very preoccupied with the whole process since.

What am I talking about? Remember that Supervisor's competition that I had applied on back in January? The one that I thought I had failed? Well last thursday afternoon around 4:00pm, I received an email advising me that I had passed for one of the positions and my interview would be on Tuesday morning at 8:30am.

So when I felt that I had done badly, in a way I was right. I had applied for two types of supervisor positions, I failed one and passed the other. I only had to write one test for both positions and because of that, my overall feeling was one of failure.

I am still amazed that I made it this far. I was told that over 50% of the people that applied never passed the first test. The next part weeded out even more. So from the hundreds that initially applied, far less are being interviewed.

Rather than going away on the weekend to my friends to celebrate St. Paddy's day, I stayed home and prepared for the interview. The interview is where you are tested on personal suitabilities and skills and abilities. There isn't really too much you can do in the way of preparation, other than look at the qualities they want for the position and think of how you have demonstrated those qualities in the past. It was a mentally exhausting few days.

Now I just have to wait and see what the results are. I was curious about how many other people they were interviewing but they wouldn't tell me. I know that interviews are being conducted this week and next and they hope to have the process completed by the end of March. It will probably be the end of April by the time I hear anything.

It may not lead to a position, even though I have gone this far, but I already feel successful and happy that I managed to jump through this many hoops.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Wacko Jacko Doesn't Show

According to a news bulletin on the television, Michael Jackson didn't show up in court today. They had issued an all points bulletin for his arrest and then a report came through that he was at the hospital for back problems.

I wonder how many more stall tactics he will use during this proceeding?

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Persistant Suitor

I feel the need to recap my weekend and share it with my friends, both real and cyber. You may find this as curious as I do.

Remember the guy I met a few weeks ago at the bar? I had given him my cell phone number and he had called me the next day. During that conversation, I lied to him and said I had a boyfriend and apologised for not divulging that the night before in my inebriated state. I explained that I had no intention of meeting anyone that night, nor did I expect anyone to be asking for my phone number, so when he did, I was surprised and caught off guard. Rather than explain it to him that night, I had decided to give him my number and then if he called, which I really didn’t think he would, I would set him straight then and I did.

When we had talked the next day, he stated that he felt some connection to me and really didn’t want to let me disappear totally out of his life, although he respected my honesty and the fact that I was involved, he also noted that clearly my relationship must be a little rocky because I had been out the night before dancing with him. I had also allowed him to kiss me once. I was afraid that he was onto my fib, but he pretended to believe it.

He asked if perhaps we could go have a coffee at some point and just talk. I agreed that it would probably be OK to do that, as long as he didn’t expect anything and accepted that I was not available. I again, didn’t really think it would happen and I ended the conversation that I would call him.

For ten days or more I never heard a peep from him and I was beginning to feel less apprehensive about the whole experience. Then earlier last week he called. I was at work and heard my cell phone ringing in my purse. Not expecting it to be him, I answered without looking at the display. At first I didn’t recognise the voice and thought it was my friend Kurby. I’m so happy I didn’t call him by name, but decided on the safer route of continuing light banter until I figured out who it was. It didn’t take long for it to sink in, by the second sentence I was filled with dread as I realised who I was speaking with.

I reminded him I was at work, when he asked if I was busy. He sarcastically remarked that he knew that I was at work and then told me what time I start and finish. Just to let me know that he was paying attention during our conversations that first night we met. He explained that he had been to Florida and that is why I never heard from him. Then he continued to tell me that he has done nothing but think about me the whole time, and how much I had shook his world, just by my presence. There were other nice comments thrown at me and I must admit that I was flattered. I think everyone loves to hear how wonderful they are even if it’s coming from an unreliable source.

He never asked to see me during this conversation, but before he hung up he told me the purpose of the call was for me to know that I couldn’t get rid of him that quickly. That he was going to wait patiently for my boyfriend to screw up for good.

I hung up the phone and felt nervous about his determination, but then appeased myself with the knowledge that he could be just all talk. He will certainly grow tired of the game after awhile.

Two days passed and my phone rang again. I quickly looked at the display and thought it said Kurby. If I had realised it said Marty, I would not have picked up.

"Hey there!" I hadn’t spoken to Kurby in awhile so I was smiling when I answered.

"Well hello! How in the hell are you?"

"I’m just great!" At this point, I still thought I was talking to Kurby.

Then he started to laugh, and I realized it was Marty. "So things are going great are they? "

"Yes they are just perfect, thanks for asking."

"OK, then asshole, guess I’ll let you go and I’ll call you back when things aren’t so great."

"All right bye bye."

His last comment seemed strange until it became clear that "things" was in reference to my boyfriend and not my life in general.

I hung up quickly and I started to think about how I was not going to answer the phone to him anymore. I know, you are probably wondering why I didn’t tell him to stop calling me and be nasty with him. I’m not sure why, except that I am typically not a nasty person and being that way is difficult for me even if I don’t owe the person anything. The other issue is that he does intimidate me by his less than savoury background and current affiliations. I didn’t want to piss him off. I preferred to remain pleasant enough, but hoped that he would tire of the whole thing and start focusing his attention on someone else who would be more deserving.

The next evening at work, my phone rang once again, and I looked at the display noticed it was him but I answered it anyway. The conversation started out with usual greetings and then he started to tell me how he couldn’t stop thinking about me, and even though I had a boyfriend he wanted me to know that he had just come into a pile of money and would like nothing more than to spend it on someone like me. He asked what I was doing on the weekend and I told him I was taking my daughter shopping. He asked if he could come and when I said no, he informed me that he had a pile of credit cards and would love to buy me some clothes.

I declined the offer. Next he asked if I would go to Mexico with him for a month. I said no. The offer was reduced to two weeks. My answer was no.

"What about going to Las Vegas for a three day weekend? You can tell your boyfriend you are going to a seminar."


"Look, I’m going to be straight with you, I really, really felt something that night on the dance floor and I’m sitting here thinking to myself, that I only have a good ten years left to live and there is nothing I would like more than to spend it with someone that cares. So jump on board baby and forget the job. I’ve got more than enough money to take care of you. I’m thinking maybe I should be going out and buying a ring or something."

"No, you shouldn’t be going to get a ring. I’m not quitting my job. I have a good 25 years to work and I’m not about to give up my job for anybody."

"I need to see you. Can we just meet for a drink on Sunday? That can’t hurt can it?"

At this point, I felt too confined by being at work and unable to talk openly to him because of the lack of privacy and it seemed like a good idea. I would meet him for a drink and tell him to lose my number, stop calling me and get over it.

"Sure, I’ll meet you on Sunday. What time and where?"

"Let’s meet at XXXXX on the Queensway at 3:30pm. Do you know where it is?"

"Yes, I know where it is, 3:30pm Sunday at XXXXX."

"Right, now you better show up!"

"I’ll be there and if for some reason I can’t make it, I’ll call you in the morning and let you know, but I’ll be there."

"Ok, I’m trusting you to show up Shelly, I really need to see you."

"I’m going to be there."

"Alright babe, see ya later."

I hung up and felt somewhat relieved because I knew that it would be rectified on Sunday. I would be able to explain diplomatically that I was not interested in pursuing a relationship with him and that he needed to move on.

Saturday while my daughter and I were shopping, he called. I didn’t answer because I had left my phone in the trunk while we were traipsing in and out of stores. I could see he had called, but he never left a message. I decided whatever it was it could wait until tomorrow.

Sunday, I made up an excuse for going out. Not that I have to explain my every movement but as a matter of course, my mother usually wants to know where I’m going and who with. I didn’t explain to her that I had met a person who was starting to resemble a stalker. No need to worry her, besides, once I met and spoke to him, he would be out of my life.

I arrive at the designated meeting place, a bar, and walked inside. I was 15 minutes late. I am typically late for everything. He was nowhere to be seen. I chose a seat at the bar, close to the door and ordered a beer. At 4:00 pm, he still had not shown and I was beginning to think that he had been there and left, or he was waiting somewhere else. I debated on just leaving and going home, but I really wanted to talk to him and make him understand that I was not about to jump into a serious relationship with him in the near or distant future. I opted to call his number. On the third ring, he answered and I skipped the greetings and immediately jumped to "Where are you?"

"Ohhh, you’re good. You call me at home and you ask me where I am. That’s funny."

"Ok, let me rephrase that for you. Where should you be?"

"Oh, did you go to the wrong room at YYYYY?"

"You didn’t say we were meeting at YYYYY, you said to meet you at XXXXX."

"I did?"

"Yes you did, and you know it. You even told me the name of the band that was playing today, remember?"

"Right! Are you there right now?"

"Yes I am. I’m sitting at the bar drinking a beer."

"I’ll be there in twenty minutes babe. See you soon."

The band started to play at 5:00 and they are one of my favourite blues bands. An older couple had entered the now packed bar about 20 minutes before and had sat next to me. They were very entertaining and for a little while, I had forgotten that I was being stood up by an asshole that I didn’t even want to date. Finally at 5:25pm, I said goodbye to the older couple and excused myself. I decided that I had most definitely been stood up and I did not want to risk him showing up two hours later and me still being there.

I now had the perfect out. I no longer felt the need to be nice. He had done the ultimate transgression of dating and I immediately changed his name in my cell phone to "Do Not Answer".

But what I really don't understand is what happened to change things? It went from this guy wanting to buy me a ring one day, to not showing up for the meeting he just HAD to have, two days later?

Friday, March 04, 2005

Barber Shop?

"Are you sure?" I nervously looked around the Barber shop as we stepped through the front door and waited for my daughter’s reassurance that this was a good place to get my hair cut.

She told me again how great it was and walked up to the woman behind the counter and started to talk to her in hushed tones. The older woman, leaned to the right to get a look at me and then went back to discussing my hair situation with my daughter.

The shop was filled with people. It was a two room barber shop. One big room at the front where we were standing and then another one, up a step and to the right. I could hear voices in there but couldn’t see anyone.

Suddenly a gentleman walked up to me, started to touch my hair and tsk tsk under his breath. He walked behind me, lifted my hair off my shoulders, pulled my collar away from my neck and did some more tsk, tsking.

"Ok, I know what I need to do for you, but you’ll have to wait until I finish with my client. Have a seat over there."

I turned around to see a row of empty chairs and sat down. My daughter was finishing her conversation with the older woman and they were both looking at me with smiles on their faces. I felt like a small child being taken for my first haircut.

The barber shop was not like any place my daughter has ever gone to before to have her own hair done. She has always frequented lovely salons with high priced stylists. This shop had dark panelled walls, cracked linoleum flooring and the old fashioned, red leather swivel chairs. I sat quietly watching for miracles to be performed on the customers that were being worked on.

There were 6 barbers all working on different people. The most remarkable thing about the Barbers was that they all looked the same age, and dressed alike and basically had the same nondescript faces. I couldn’t tell which one had made the assessment of my own hair.

My stomach was all queasy while I waited. What if they wreck my hair? What will I do? Why would she bring me to a dump like this?

My thoughts were interrupted by a gentleman motioning me to sit down in his chair. He was not the original barber. Soon he and another one were at the back of the chair, lifting my hair and murmuring quietly. I could hear the occasional tsk, but nothing else. They too lifted my collar away from the back of my neck and peered at my skin.

I could see them consulting with my daughter in the mirror and then I was led to the wash basin where the second man, washed my hair. After leading me back to the chair, he started to perform the lightest massage on my shoulders and neck. It felt like butterfly wings beating softly on my skin. The sensation was so lovely that I shut my eyes and drifted off to another place.

That was a mistake. When I opened my eyes, I was shocked to see that all my hair had been lopped off in one straight line around my head just below my ears. There was no style, just a straight line.

My hair is naturally wavy and most hair stylists will give me a style that requires effort. I don’t like to have to spend a lot of time fixing my hair in the morning. I had told my daughter this when we were discussing the need for me to get my hair cut.

I was not expecting it to be chopped off. I wanted to keep my long hair. I loved my hair.

I burst into tears and ran out of the shop screaming. My daughter ran up to me and said, "Mom are you awake? Are you taking me to work today?"

"Mom, mom!"

Then I opened my eyes and felt my head. It was all there. All my hair in it’s messy glory was still attached to my head and I had just had the weirdest dream I’ve had in a long, long time.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Plummeting sidebar

I tried to fix my page by making all my pictures thumbnails. I thought this would move my sidebar to where it was. It worked for most of yesterday. Today the sidebar is dropping to the bottom once the page loads. As far as I know, I didn't do anything else.

I think unluckyhas jinxed blogger. Or I am just living under a black cloud. ;o)

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Rebel at Heart

I was inspired to write this after reading PPQ's latest post about an old boyfriend. The post is dated March 1, 2005, if you want to see what I am referring to.

She describes an unhealthy relationship she was in and how her friends pulled her aside and told her frankly that she should be evaluating the situation. She did and ended it.

It made me wonder if there is any reason why I do the opposite of what I either know is good for me, or do the opposite of what other's know is good for me.

The fellow she describes is very much like my ex husband. He was a very self absorbed, controlling, volatile individual and yet when I met him, in spite of a deep rooted fear of him, the strong attraction compelled me to ignore my own intuition and the fears of my friends and family, who tried to warn me.

I think part of that stems from my short relationship previously with a fabulous guy in high school, who wasn't part of the "in-crowd". My snotty friends, laughed at me so hard and questioned me at length about how I could be seen walking around with such a loser, that I told him that I didn't want to see him anymore. I was lying to him. Deep down I did want to see him again. I wanted to see a lot more of him, but I doubted my taste and followed what my peers were telling me.

He was a great guy. He has turned out to be very successful and a wonderful husband and provider for his wife and children. I certainly made a bad decision that day by listening to other people.

Perhaps that was why, years later, when my friends and family questioned my decision to marry Ex, that I dismissed their opinions as garbage and decided that I knew best and our love would conquer all.

It was such a concern, that I found out later, it had been the topic in one of the vehicles enroute to the reception, and that people were taking bets on how quickly it would end.

It should have ended within the first months of marriage, but because of my inability to admit they were right, I stuck it out for fourteen years, and consistently attempted to make my man happy.

In retrospect, I am surprised at my tenacity and determination. I'm also irritated by my inability to appreciate that people that truly love you, would not want to see you unhappy.

It wasn't all for naught. I have a beautiful daughter, who I wouldn't trade for anything. In addition, I formed great relationships with his parent's, brother, plus his aunts, uncles and cousins.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005


I learned how to do a thumbnail of a picture. So now my sidebar is where it should be and the picture will not or should not spill into the edge of the monitor. I think it's better. I learned the trick here.