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My Cowboy Brother's daughter is in town.
She's 10.

quick! hide your valuables, lock up your sanity, and start running now.  Toronto should go on Red alert.

actually, she's a swell kid.  Lots of energy, lots of fun, and very happy.  We've loved having her around over the past few years... and my gods, she adores theBigBad.  Two summers ago when she was here she bit him a dozen times and locked him out on the balcony.  He also spent hours tossing her up in the air.   Last summer he was again Her Favorite Relative.  He managed to carry her around the Zoo (though I think she did walk sometimes).   They also went on many crazy-crazy CNE rides... the kinds I refuse to go on (though she did convince me to go on a few).

So, I'm not sure What's the Plan for this year.  I've booked 3 days off - Thurs/Friday and Monday.  Gods! 5 entire days off in a row??  It true.  It was a real trick getting permission for it... but it's rather exciting!  5 days of family fun and adventure....
(eeeek! 5 days?!.... i should start running now...)

anyway, in a very real way I'm looking forward to seeing her and hanging out with my Dad over the next few days.  It's too bad my brother couldn't make it out from Vancouver and my mom is away, otherwise it would have been a big party.  As it is, it will still be great. 
Great as in madly busy, and full of photos. 

i love summers... but at this time of year the streets become a hazard. 

This morning this cyclist zipped past the stopped cars and almost ran me over as I stepped off the curb to get the the streetcar.   It is the equivalent of someone gunning their car so they don't have to stop when the streetcar pulls over.  Then she screamed something as she zipped past.  The old lady beside me almost had a heart attack. 

I have a lot of friends who ride around Toronto... and thank gods most of them are sane and obey the simple rules of the road.  Its the ones like Zippy that are dangerous.  I'm pretty tired of cyclists running reds, riding on the sidewalk, going the wrong way and cutting through traffic.  It's not only irritating but dangerous. 

A Toronto-centric update.
Ed Mirvish died just 13 days short of his 93rd birthday, a day he celebrated for more than 30 years with a street party, giveaways and lots of balloons and loud music.

Kinda sad.  Sam the Record Man shop closed up.  Now Honest Ed has passed away.  Bits of Toronto's history fallen away.  The old characters are exiting the stage.

Birthdays come but once a year
Marking time as Death draws near







                                                                                                     Happy Birthday!

May the cities in your wake
Burn like candles on your

Happy Birthday cinnabari

I expect she'll kill me later... :D   was nice knowing you all.

Happy Summer Solstice!

Heh, firstly, I can't believe how that message board over at Azimov's is still rattling on.  Gorsh.  It's probably the best example of "Sexism and Science Fiction" around. LOL.  Like so much net it's gone down hill, despite a few interesting arguments and some attempts to get back on track.  sigh.  I find it interesting how much anger and bile is being projected.  Still I had to laugh at some of the responses to my reference in the last post.  My friends are great.

I'm almost tempted to see what a community like SFandF_writers would have to say about such a subject.  I suspect it would be a much more civil conversation.  I *hope* it would be.

Yesterday was Father's Day so we ended up spending the afternoon with Dad.  There was a good hour spent tearing apart a very dirty lawnmower that TheBigBad was using.  There wasn't much to do - remove the various parts and try and clean them and pull out the burnt out fan-belt thing.  Alas, we had no replacement parts, so it will have to wait.  It's always fun taking stuff apart.

Dad did teach me how to make parathas.  Indian flatbread.  OMG.  so good.  I made a curry and we brought it over.  Ate too much.

so yeah, Father's Day. 
My father is an amazing guy.  Really.  I am so very, very lucky.  What better role model I could not imagine.  I love him very much.
all my respect Dad.


So today is watership's birthday. 
Happy Birthday!    I doubt you'll read this but I'm wishing you from across the room.  :D
he's the culprit who got me into LJ.  M.  .. it is all YOUR Fault!

Friday was of course the_axel's birthday..  same day as my Brother John's birthday.  We showed up to Ax's birthday bash at the gin palace on Saturday for a few drinks.  Hopefully we'll see him soon and spend an evening with him and the_siobhan soon.

well, should i thank buymeaclue  for mentioning this on LJ?  

THIS being:
Sexism and Science Fiction

 I think blood squirted from my eyes, splashed on the desktop and has now plugged up my keyboard. ;-)   LOL.  That's okay, cause i'm a woman and we're inherently good at cleaning, right?  (i can hear the husband's response from here).  Cleaning, baby making, playing the harp etc. 

honestly though, it is near impossible for me to take statements like: "Perhaps when your primary biological duty is to create life, then nurture it to maturity, and that being something far greater than any man can do, you must live with some deficits in return. These deficits probably make them better mothers."   Anyone who says stuff like that just drops off my radar as too ignorant to take seriously.  I'm amazed though how rapidly it became political poo-flinging.

gods there's a lot of twits online, who actually parade their stupidity for the world... and put it in writing... to be archived and blogged over.  It really never ceases to amaze me.  

What a crazy few days we had...  I'm almost glad to get to work and relax.

The weekend started on Thursday with a trip to Toronto's islands.  We wanted to get some photos of the Luminato festival as seen from Toronto Island.  We ended up having dinner on a picnic table surrounded by Evil Looking Gulls.  Then we walked around taking photos until it was dark enough to see the light show.  We encountered a cat who followed us for 2 hours.   Very pretty cat - and I think if TheCat was not such a loner he might have ended up with a companion.  Anyway, the cat remained on the island.  It looked well cared for - and there are some houses on the island where she could live.  We didn't get home til 1am or so.

Friday:  the gym, then the ROM - for the opening week of the Crystal.  I didn't expect to like it - but it is a lovely space.  We got a lot of photos to go through... and eventually post to Flickr i guess.   When I have the time.   We then headed to Dad's for some yummy dinner, went shopping with him to a Polish supermarket in Mississagua and then got home at 11:30 or so.   

The problems I have with these late nights - getting to bed at 12:30 or 1:30 or so... I'm getting up early.  6am.  6:30am.  Sometimes I'll sleep in til 7am!  Five hours of sleep doesn't cut it much any more.

Saturday we "took it easy" for the morning - got up early - went to Kensington Market.  Picked up some wine.  Came home and then turned around and took the GOTrain out to Oakville to visit JP and meet her kids.  I brought the kids beads (bribe!) which they seemed to like.  The kids and dog though fell for TheBigBad.  The girls adored him... especially the youngest.   She's small enough to be picked up and tossed around and swung through the air.  Poor Bad... he got a work out.   We did have a great dinner - lots of roasted veggies (Which the kids dug into!) and then got time to sit around and talk and talk.  I think she's doing such a great job with her kids.  They've got a nice place that feels comfortable.  It feels like a home.  We got the last train back from Oakville and so we went to bed around 2am.  blerg...  so much for the idea of getting up early and rushing out to the brickworks again.

Sunday we dragged our tired and sore bodies out to The Brickworks again.  More photography ensued.  We still got up around 7:30am and then dragged around the house and finally staggered up to the TTC.  It was almost 11am by the time we actually got going (with 2 false starts - oops directions?).   Anyway, more photos of the Brickworks will be coming soon.  We had more time to wander around and there were a fair number of people there too.  Took lots more photos.  By the time we left though I got the worst headache - a tension headache that just ripped my head apart with each step.  Blood sugar issue I think because I'd not eaten anything since 9am - and it was 4pm when we started to leave.  It felt like someone was tearing at my skull.   We did eventually stagger home - and TheBad took care of the cooking mostly - a new addiction has started - homemade meatball subs.  Awesome. 

anyway, lots of photos to come.  I'm exhausted and its rather funny to say:  gee, i want to get back to work to relax.

There was a recent call for "Mundane SF", and somehow I got to reading "Survivor Stories" about Katrina.  There's an archive at City Pages that has just focused my attention.  It's so easy to forget this - now onward of 20 months later.  (It will be two years in Aug).  The stories on Citypages there are still though just as captivating as they were then. 

So, I went looking today while stuck on the phone (and banging my head on customer issues).  This article was pubbed in February, but still talks about what is going on.  " Half of the homes in New Orleans still do not have electricity."  "The main public health care provider, Charity Hospital, which saw 350,000 patient visits a year, remains closed."  "..public transportation down 83 percent from the number of pre-Katrina buses".  "The City of New Orleans now loses more water than it uses, because of faulty pipes and joints in the delivery system. More than 135 million gallons are being pumped out daily but only 50 million gallons are being used, leaving 85 million gallons "unaccounted for and probably leaking out of the system."

Anyway, there's a monthly report that comes out that discusses the issues (today: 70 schools still closed / 64% of health care fac. open / 61% of population have returned). 

anyway, thats the thoughts for today.  I've got almost no connectivity at home right now...   sigh.   and i'm really behind on email replies.  I'll try and be better and get caught up.

I resurrected my flickr account - mostly unused since:
1. can't be bothered too often to check it
2. was uploading photos elsewhere
3. couldn't remember which user / pass I needed for it.

number 3 got solved.

so anyways
zero's pho-toes.

i'm sure some of you got your flickrs* on so friend me (or whatever it is you do on flickr)
I won't be using it much but there I go.

*and some of you were on my list since i last logged onto the thing a year plus ago.

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