Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Victoria Long Weekend in Review

The weekend was pretty chockful of activities and I am still tired from all the different events. Friday, I went to see The DaVinci Code. I can't say that I was all that impressed, but thought there were some good moments during the flick. I guess I always find it difficult to watch a movie after I have read the book. They simply never seem to do them justice. That evening, RB and a slew of other friends went to a cocktail party at Miso Honi's place. Saturday, 7 friends and I drove North to a friends Chalet in Beaver Valley, which is situated on a beautiful private ski resort. Saturday's weather was beautiful and I took a hike on my own in the late afternoon. It was nice to get away and be alone and bond with nature again. Skiing was obviously shutdown, but a major storm came through and gave us a bit of winter on the Sunday morning. We returned Sunday afternoon, then headed out to a club for a bit of dancing. Don't have much time to post more, so I've posted some pics.

Saturday: ski hills and valley. The hills are quite steep and it took me an hour to get down the hills and back around.

ski machinery graveyard. I love Urban decay. Beauty exists everywhere.

Sunset: snow making machines

Urban decay: snow making machine graveyard

Sunset and a babbling brook

Hat antics: We found the hats and decided to have an impromptu hat party. As you can tell, we could barely keep a straight face.

Miso Honi and his Episcopalian costume found in the closet. I almost peed in my pants watching him pose.

Snow Sunday morning. Yes, it was May 21.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

My Fan base leaves me wondering what's wrong with them.

Curious to find out who my fans were I decided to follow in Tornwordo's footsteps and do a Traffic search on my blog. This is what showed up in the search engines that directed people to my site:

pimples on testicles - referencing these posts: 1, 2
emotional damage from childhood enemas - referencing these posts: 1, 2, 3

For the record, I do not and never had any pimples on my nuts, thank you very much. I keep them, clean, groomed and well scrubbed. Two, I never had a childhood enema, and none of my adult ones ever resulted in any psychological fuck up, just a good clean fuck.

Who comes up with these qeuries and most importantly WHY?

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

BBQ Chicken and the roasting of traditionalism

Growing up in a household where the preferred method for dealing with family issues, was to ignore them and remain in silence, taught me at an early age that personal issues were a dirty topic. There is a saying in Chinese that “We do not wash our dirty laundry in public” and it says a lot about the traditional ways of the Chinese culture.

When I came out to my parents and brother almost 18 years go, I had imagined at the time that they would accept and love me unconditionally, despite these traditions. I was naive, and didn't understand that the culture and traditions of my people were instilled so deeply in my parents.. I didn't realise that my parents had invested in me their dreams of a future. Dreams quite different from mine own, and my telling them that I was gay, would smash those dreams on the rocks of reality.

In all of this, I discovered that these cultural ideas of respect and honour were also instilled in me. I knew that I would bring shame on my family if I spoke about being gay, so I kept my mouth shut and went back into the closet for 4 more years, all the while becoming more curious about experimenting and living my life truly as the person I was.

I was young and confused. Tortured and lost. In addition to the Cultural responsibility, I was also raised in a Catholic home, went to an all-boys Catholic school, and my grandfather was an evangelical reverend. I had more than my share of baggage and realised very quickly that my being gay was not going to be easy. The 80’s had just passed, and being gay was still looked upon with derision. The AIDs epidemic fueled the stigma of gays as a disease on society and I was only too aware of it. My parents and family though liberal in many ways, were traditionalists when it came to family and their children. Yet, I still held out, believing that love was unconditional and that it would rise above all things.

However, as the years passed the hope that I would be embraced with family approval and love began to fade and I psychologically acceded that my parents and family would never want anything to do with my "gay' lifestyle. The idea that your family is not supportive of you in any endeavour is hard enough. Believing that they want nothing to do with your partner and future family is even harder. It was particularly hard attending family events and holiday get togethers, watching everyone interact with each others husband, wife, daughter or son, all the while unable to talk about yours. I always wondered if they knew how I felt, or how lonely and isolated I was from my family. Though we saw each other fairly regularly, I was always mindful that there was a wedge in our relationship, because I was unable to share my life, joys and happiness with them.

However, everything comes full circle. This past Saturday, my brother Woozy celebrated his 35th Birthday and he and his wife J sent out an email earlier in the week to me, inviting me and RB to the bbq. This invite meant more to me than they could possibly imagine. For 17 years, my identity as a gay man and any relationship I ever had was never discussed with my family, and never acknowledged.

All anybody in this world wants is to be Acknowledged.

So, I arrived at my brothers place mid-afternoon and prepared the BBQ withmy sister-in-law. RB was still working so he didn’t arrive till 8ish after all my brothers friends, and in-laws had arrived. Upon RB’s arrival, my brother and sister-in-law greeted him warmly and introduced him to the family and friends. It was an amazing experience for me, because for the first time I felt a bond and connection to my family that I hadn’t experienced before. My brother, wife and all her siblings and their partners welcomed us and treated us equally. I didn’t feel like a cast-off, nor did I feel any trepidation, fear or embarrassment about my life and partner. We were welcomed as part of the family and I was so full of happiness and pride that I was beaming and glowing. To feel equal in the eyes of those you love and to know they mean it, is something I know I will never take advantage of again.

So, I am very thankful. I am thankful that people do change for the better and that I was proven wrong. I am thankful that a new stage in my life has opened up, and that I no longer need to feel ashamed of anything. And I am most thankful for my brother and his wife for looking at me straight in the eyes, and acknowledging RB and I for who we are. Partners and Lovers, No different than they.

What’s more, I left knowing that I no longer had any dirty laundry.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006


Last night, RB and I headed over to visit his friend Scott, whom we hadn't seen in a couple of months. We had dinner, chatted and later relaxed with a rolled dessert and headed home after 9pm. We got on the streetcar and headed East back to the City. As we were cruising along Queen St. West, we were marvelling at how much the neighbourhood had changed in the last 15 years. It was trendy and high-end funky boutiques were everywhere. As we passed the GAP, RB looked quizzically out the window.

RB: "What the hell are Summerts?"
Me (now looking out the window): "A what?"
RB: "What are Summerts?"
Me: "Where the hell are you looking?
RB: "Over there at the GAP."
Me: "I have no idea what your talking about."
RB: "Oh wait....ummm. forget it. (Starts laughing hysterically)
Me: "What?
RB: "Umm it said Summer T's"

Friday, May 5, 2006

6 degrees of separation & a Thought

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Last night, RB, a friend of his, and I went to an opening for a photo exhibit of Thailand after the Tsunami. The pictures were taken by RB's co-worker Maggie, while she was visiting there on a trip shortly after the disaster. Maggie had gone with her friend Lisa to the devastated region and both returned with pictures and decided to do an exhibit with the proceeds going to the Tsunami Relief Fund.

I decided to call my best friend Anne-Marie (aka Babycakes) to see what she was doing and if she wanted to go. It turns out that her colleague was Maggie's cousin and they were all heading there together to support her. We laughed at the irony of it all and how people were connected. When I got to the cafe where the exhibit was taking place, a familiar voice called out my name. I turned and there was my co-worker standing in the doorway. It seems his fiance is the cousin of Lisa and they too were there to support.

All of this got me thinking about the Six Degrees of Separation Theory proposed by Frigyes Karinthy in 1929. The theory is that everyone on the planet is somehow connected to another person on the planet through a chain of no-more than 4 other acquaintances. The idea that we are all connected in some way, gives me comfort and makes me feel closer to each person I know. It also makes me wonder why there is so much hatred, bitterness and strife in this world. If we are all connected, are not each of us brothers and sisters? I know the thought is rather juvenile and I realise that the politics of the world can't be reduced to such simplicity. But what if they were? Imagine what we could do or accomplish if we all thought of each other as a connected network of family and friends.

Imagine no more hate, pain, famine or war.

The beauty of it all seems so clear in my mind, but I realise that I am a dreamer and that the reality of life on this planet is far more complicated than this one theory. But I still have hope that things will change and that possibly you or I can illicit change through our network of connections.

So, with this in mind, I proposition you all on a project that I have been ruminating upon. To some, the idea may seem rather foolish or bizarre, but I believe there is something in this idea that can potentially make a change, be it in society, yourself, or the World.

Maybe all.

There is a need for change. A need for compassion and understanding in our World, that I think we have forgotten about. Our lives have become so complex and frenetic, what with our jobs, families, social lives and own personal issues, that we have lost sight of the other role we play as members of a Global community. My belief is that through action we can often discover something beautiful in ourselves and others, and that it will plant a seed for change. I believe that every person in this world is connected in some way, and that a single action of good can start a wave that will continue and travel across the globe. Just imagine the following scenario, which I recently experienced:

You are walking down the street. The ominous clouds indicate imminent rain and everyone is rushing about, focused on their own worries and destinations. Then, out of the blue, your briefwork bag breaks and the contents spread across the sidewalk, the wind carrying many of your work papers across the street. You stop, curse and can’t believe your day is going to shit, when a stranger begins to pick your papers up in front of you and out of the gutter. Another person sees that person, realises what is happening and also begins to help. Soon people across the street are running about and into the street to assist. You are dumbfounded, but also immensely grateful to these strangers. Soon, all is recovered. Everyone smiles and your Thanks are noted and everyone carries on with their day.

You, continue to work, smiling despite having your papers in disarray. You are thankful and feel a bit of warmth that others were so kind. The strangers in turn, walk away with a slight spring to their step. They too realise that they have done something kind and that it may have helped this stranger. No names, numbers or words were exchanged, yet everyone feels the same warmth, the same sense of community. These people continue this sense of well-being through the day, and it is infectious and without realising it, they have affected hundreds of people indirectly, through one single act of kindness.

I suppose, none of this is all that new. People always talk about doing good things, and many people do. As I mentioned, I have a project in mind that I have been working on for a year or more that I hope will come to fruition. All of my recent experiences have indicated that I need to do more with my life and that I need to give back. I've never been one to believe in destiny, but I am beginning to wonder if everything that is or has happened to me has some reason. I hate getting all spiritual and philosophical about it, but just stay tuned, as I may need your advice, help or hand.

Much love,

P.S. I realise that this post is the epitomy of tangential thinking, but my thought process tends to run like a train wreck, from one thing to the other until I actually find some valuable lesson from my experiences.

Thursday, May 4, 2006


As some of you may know, my work is rather eclectic in that it is technical, but revolves around planning, design, consultation and technical support. One of my clients happens to be the Toronto Police, so yesterday I went out on a field ride in one of their off-duty unmarked cruisers. We were doing some technical network tests around the Danforth (a street in Toronto), where they were experiencing some latency issues. The area is known for it's problems and gangsta-style kids who walk around with attitude and pants that hang at their knees.

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Our tests required numerous stops, U-Turns and circling of the area. Obviously, this made residents rather suspicious and to be honest, the unmarked cruiser isn't all that inconspicuous to most kids and residents in the area, who probably thought we were doing some surveillance. What we didn't expect was to be pulled over by another on-duty cruiser.

Our driver, who is part of the Police Force, but within the I.T unit pulled over, and started to laugh and joke about how this had never happened before. We turned on the radio and tuned into the frequency for that Police division:

Dispatcher: Officer pulling over suspected 2-0-8.
Officer: We have the cruiser pulled over. No obvious signs of damage. Three visible occupants. I don't think this is the 2-0-8. Description does not match.
Dispatcher: Your orders are to intercept and contact this 2-0-8. Proceed please.
Officer: Approaching driver side. It is an off duty unmarked cruiser, but it looks like...

The officer comes into sight and looks at us and starts to laugh and says to us:

Officer: Hmmmph, I thought that was what this was.
Our driver: Heya, how are you officer?
Officer: Good, thanks. Sorry, we were ordered to pull you over.
OD: What's going on?
Officer: One sec.
Oficer (to dispatcher): Cancel the 2-0-8 . It's one of our Mobile I.T cruisers. Will update shortly. Over.
Officer (turns back to us, smiling): So, I assume you guys are testing the dead spots?
OD (pointing at us): Yeah, these guys are from (company) and are on the run with us to troubleshoot.
Officer: Nice to meet ya. Sorry for the scare. We just got a call in that there was a stolen unmarked Police cruiser, that was on a rampage driving into other cars. Apparently you have been driving in circles and were seen as suspicious by 2 other cruisers.

How much more excitement can I ask for? Woo Hoo?

Tuesday, May 2, 2006

Cirque de So Gay and Maidens of the Mist

Aside from being too lazy to post, I've been rather busy with home renovations, painting canvasses and catching up on reading. In the midst of all this, I have had the chance to do a few fun things on the weekend. A few weeks ago, a group of friends, and co-workers went to the Toronto School of Circus Arts, where we learned to Trapeze. It was incredibly fun and it helped me conquer some major obstacles and fears with heights. I did quite well for myself, and completed a number of different tricks. Pictures unfortunately were forbidden during this lesson, but I was able to get a video of RB doing his act during a previous visit, video provided below (I'm climbing the ladder on the left):

This past weekend, 2 of my friends, Paulina and Dragonfly took a day trip to Niagara Falls, where I tried my virginal hand on the slot machines with all the Blue hairs and obviously die-hard addicts. I stopped at a loss of $25.00 and vowed to never play again. A complete waste of money, but an expereince nonetheless. After walking about, we visited the Inniskillin winery, which was packed with tourists, most notably Japanese and Chinese, who for some reason absolutely LOVE Ice wine. A great time was had by all, and I've posted a few pics below.

The drive in Paulina's new car. I just had a Redbull, can you tell?

Spring along the Niagara Canadian Side.

Daffodils...god I love Spring!

Dragonfly, Paulina and me

Me and Paulina

Maiden of the Mists

Maiden of the Mists and rainbows

The Falls

The Falls

The view from the Canadian side.

Dragonfly and Paulina

Paulina and me posing