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Monday, October 29, 2007

I am being, not just trying anymore

I want to write a post about how my life is going now but I feel reluctant...

Is it because of work?

That's part of it.

Work is going well and I have applied for a longer term contract.

Wish me luck.

Is it because I have just started dating again and I am not sure how that will go?

That's part of it.

It's going well but it's early stages...

I don't want to jinx it.

Is it because I have less time online because of facebook, myspace and the stroumboulopouli?

That's part of it... but I enjoy those things.

Are there better things to do?

Yes live performances of comedy and music and whatnot..

maybe all that is part of why I don't blog here as much anymore.

Maybe the reason I started this blog is not as valid for me anymore...

that is part of it too.

Barbara W.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Visit to the Island on a Saturday in June

Who knew Toronto had such nice beaches so close by.
A happy discovery.
Since Ontario is mine to discovery I am going to spend some weekends exploring it a bit.

Friday, May 18, 2007

I know I know it's been a long time

Not sure there is a reader left...

It's been a long time since I posted on my 'own' blog.

I have been busy working.

I have also been busy playing.

It's a balance of social life, hobby and financial obligations.

I have a job I like, and a second job I like, and sometimes a third job... seems to be no shortage of jobs in Toronto if you look hard enough.

The is no shortage of things to do in Toronto either.

In the past two weeks I have been to two Art shows, a comedy night, a taping of The Hour where Gene Simmons was one of the Guests... That was interesting. all of that was free...

I may not need my own blog so much anymore.

I have worked out a few things that the blog has helped me work out.

I may be ready for what's next...

what ever that is.

I did an interview with George Stroumboulopoulos. That will be available soon on the other blog, the Stroumboulopouli.

It will be half an hour long. I know that sounds long.

We may do more interviews like that... maybe that is what's next

Just being Barbara

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sick of the old purse?

I never gave it a thought. Who'd a thunk?
Have you ever noticed gals who sit their purses on public restroom floors - that go directly to their dining tables? Happens a lot! It's not always the 'restaurant food' that causes stomach distress. Sometimes "what you don't know 'will' hurt you"!

Read on...
Mom got so upset when a guest came in the door and plopped their purses down on the counter where she was cooking or setting up the buffet. She always said that purses are really dirty, because of Where they have been. Smart Momma!!! It's something just about every woman carries with them. While we may know what's inside our purses, do you have any idea what's on the outside?
Shauna Lake put purses to the test - for bacteria - with surprising results. You may think twice about where you put your purse. Women carry purses everywhere; from the office to public restrooms to the floor of the car. Most women won't be caught without their purses, but did you ever stop to think about where your purse goes during the day?
"I drive a school bus, so my purse has been on the floor of the bus a lot," says one woman. "On the floor of my car, probably in restrooms." "I put my purse in grocery shopping carts, on the floor of bathroom stalls while changing a diaper," says another woman and of course in my home which should be clean."
We decided to find out if purses harbor a lot of bacteria. We learned how to test them at Nelson Laboratories in Salt Lake, then we set out to test the average woman's purse.
Most women told us they didn't stop to think about what was on the bottom of their purse. Most said they usually set their purses on top of kitchen tables and counters where food is prepared. Most of the ladies we talked to told us they wouldn't be surprised if their purses were at least a little bit dirty.
It turns out purses are so surprisingly dirty, even the microbiologist who tested them was shocked. Microbiologist Amy Karren of Nelson Labs says nearly all of the purses tested were not only high in bacteria, but high in harmful kinds of bacteria.
Pseudomonas can cause eye infections, staphylococcus aurous can cause serious skin infections, and salmonella and e-coli found on the purses could make people very sick. In one sampling, four of five purses tested positive for salmonella, and that's not the worst of it. "There is fecal contamination on the purses," says Amy.
Leather or vinyl purses tended to be cleaner than cloth purses, and lifestyle seemed to play a role. People with kids tended to have dirtier purses than those without, with one exception. The purse of one single woman who frequented nightclubs had one of the worst contaminations of all. "Some type of feces, or even possibly vomit or something like that," says Amy.
So the moral of this story - your purse won't kill you, but it does has the potential to make you very sick if you keep it on places where you eat. Use hooks to hang your purse at home and in restrooms, and don't put it on your desk, a restaurant table, or on your kitchen countertop. Experts say you should think of your purse the same way you would a pair of shoes. "If you think about putting a pair of shoes onto your countertops, that's the same thing you're doing when you put your purse on the countertops" - your purse has gone where every individual before you has spat, coughed, urinated, emptied bowels, etc! Do you really want to bring that home with you?
The microbiologists at Nelson also said cleaning a purse will help. Wash cloth purses and use leather cleaner to clean the bottom of leather purses.
Thanks to Susan for this email warning..

Friday, March 30, 2007

I did it now I'm too frozen to watch

I mentioned on my other blog that I wanted to do my Best Story Ever for The Hour.

It was an exercise in exploring the medium, that aspect of participation, and it was an exercise in exploring my feelings in my grief. My story is about that grief and the hardest day of my life. When I decided to tell this story I was pretty calm about it. It's about Graham and I am very proud about who Graham is and what he means to me. For those who don't know me well. Graham was my boyfriend who passed away 3 years ago in June.

I taped the story 3 dozen times and took it over to The Hour twice, without feeling what I experiencing now. I just saw now that the story has been posted on The Hours website. I saw that, and I ran away... I am frozen. I can't watch.

Where the hell did that brave woman go?

I think I will just ... I don't know...
You can go see it and tell me what you think... go to click on Best Story Ever on the sidebar...

for Graham

Sunday, March 18, 2007

All Moved

If you have ever moved You may recall the stress, the planning, the lists of things forgotten, the things that will break and the 100 things you need to buy for the new place.

I am in the new place now and I still have a lot of that to do.

Which reminds me I better write down the list of things I need to buy as soon as I find where I packed my pens...

A broom for one, then I need to find the part of my vacuum that has motor on it... then a dish drainer thingy... these are all great excuses to not clean up but if I'm going to have a house warming party I should take care of this.

Toilet paper... oh yeah.. I better go shopping again... I wonder where my pen is..

In other news I did a radio interview yesterday.
I will tell you more about it on my other blog in a few days.
It was all about The Hour and George and the blog called The Stroumboulopouli.

be organized?

Monday, March 05, 2007

Unsettled ready to settle

I am on the verge of moving... most of it is packed. Plans are falling into place. Friends are getting their excuses ready... LOL

Don't worry It will only take a few good people.
I can't wait to blog from my new place.

I started a new Temp job last week and it is going well so far. I work for the govt. That's all I am gonna say about that. No I am not a spy. Is there such a thing as Temp spies? Nor do I want to be a spy. I am just a receptionist and not the Miss Moneypenny kind.

To change the subject;
The new name for Jian's new radio show is.... still undecided. Do you have any more suggestions? I think I ran out of suggestions ...

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

I have been neglecting this blog a bit in favour of projects I am
working on for the other blog.
Please see my latest post on the stroumboulopouli

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy love day!

I found this quote in The Globe and Mail the other day.

"There is no love sincerer than the love of food"

George Bernard Shaw.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Sorry slow to post

I don't announce I won't be posting for awhile because I never know that in advance...

I am looking for a new job because I only have two weeks left at my current temp job...
I have some interviews this week coming up. I remain hopeful. I am settling down nicely in Toronto and I am ready for a permanent job. Being bilingual seems to help get my foot in the door around here.

What fun things have I done since my last post?
I went to see The Golden Dogs last Friday night at Lee's Palace. That have improved a lot as live performers since this clip was shot.

I watched the entire series of Twitch City this weekend ... all 13 episodes on DVD.

Twitch city was funded in part by CTF and is exactly why we need to remind our cable companies to support Canadian productions. We pay them our hard earned money and I want part of that to support Canadian writer, actors and production companies.
Jim Shaw Jr, of Shaw cable and Karl Péladeau of videotron are just trying to keep the money you all ready gave them, to support Canadian TV, for themselves. Jerks!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Sunday one culture, Monday another

I finally changed my Quebec Plate for some Ontario plates...
Je me souviens all the good times in Quebec.
Now I am discovering Ontario has all kinds of culture!

I have had a significant week...
It started with Sunday. My friend Wendy had invited me to see her class perform their final exam. The class was an improve class and the final exam is held in front of an audience at Second City or in this case just down the street. It was a full house and I invited my friend E to come along. Wendy, E, and a group of friends had just gone to The Hour together in January. So this invite sort of came about from that. The performances were very brave, plucky sometimes funny, sometimes not... that's improv for you. I got invited out to dinner with the improv class... Of course I went. Some of these people are going to be famous one day... It was a blast just chatting with them over nachos.
Thank you Wendy for that unique look into the comedy culture of Toronto.

Monday. My friend Lorraine and I went to see Not Just Another Benefit. It's a show put on by the folk music scene
to support Marie-Lynn Hammond after she had a serious riding accident.
Musicians don't get good medical coverage if you know what I'm sayin', hence the need for this support effort from her friends in the music business.
We knew Jian Ghomeshi and and fellow Moxy Fruvous member Mike Ford were performing. Also performing were Stuart McLean, Don Ross (amazing what he can do with a guitar), Rick Salutin (teacher at Ryerson), Sylvia Tyson, and Marie-Lynn Hammond herself performed along with many others... It was a very cool Canadian wide and local folk music culture scene.... It was one amazing night. Thank you Jian for being so nice and spending your time hanging out with us.
Jian had to leave and go catch up on some sleep but Lorraine and I stayed and enjoyed a great finish. The entire cast of performers got back on stage and sang a song called Not Another benefit.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

A song that I can't help liking.

Months back I found featured this song on Will and Ben's Record Room.
It appeals to me for cultural reasons that come from my mothers family. They have roots in the Liverpool area of the UK . This song comes from that area with a language about it that I just adore.
Cup Of Tea by Shack

Monday, January 22, 2007

A wonderful woman sent this to me. Thanks Sue!

A young wife sat on a sofa on a hot humid day, drinking iced tea and visiting with her Mother.
As they talked about life, about marriage, about the responsibilities of life and the obligations of adulthood, the mother clinked the ice cubes in her glass thoughtfully and turned a clear, sober glance upon her daughter."Don't forget your Sisters," she advised, swirling the tea leaves to the bottom of her glass. They'll be more important as you get older.No matter how much you love your husband, no matter how much you love the children you may have, you are still going to need Sisters.
Remember to go places with them now and then; do things with them. "Remember that 'Sisters' means ALL the women... your girlfriends, your daughters, and all your other women relatives too.
You'll need other women. Women always do.

"What a funny piece of advice!" The young woman thought.
Haven't I just gotten married? Haven't I just joined the couple-world?
I'm now a married woman, for goodness sake! A grownup! Surely my husband and the family we may start will be all I need to make my worthwhile!"

But she listened to her Mother.
She kept contact with her sisters and made more women friends each year.
As the years tumbled by, one after another, she gradually came to understand that her Mom really knew what she was talking about.
As time and nature work their changes and their mysteries upon a woman, Sisters are the mainstays of her life.
After almost 50 years of living in this world, here is what I've learned:THIS SAYS IT ALL:
Time passes.
Life happens.
Distance separates.
Children grow up.
Jobs come and go.
Love waxes and wanes.
Men don't do what they're supposed to do.
Hearts break.
Parents die.
Colleagues forget favors.
Careers end.
BUT.........Sisters are there, no matter how much time and how many miles are between you.
A girl friend is never farther away than needing her can reach.
When you have to walk that lonesome valley and you have to walk it by yourself, the women in your life will be on the valley's rim, cheering you on, praying for you, pulling for you, intervening on your behalf, and waiting with open arms at the valley's end. Sometimes, they will even break the rules and walk beside you...Or come in and carry you out.
Girlfriends, daughters, granddaughters, daughters-in-law, sisters, sisters-in-law, Mothers, Grandmothers, aunties, nieces, cousins, and extended family, all bless our life!
The world wouldn't be the same without women, and neither would I.
When we began this adventure called womanhood, we had no idea of the incredible joys or sorrows that lay ahead.
Nor did we know how much we would need each other. Every day,we need each other still.
Pass this on to all the women who help make your life meaningful.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Post # 300. Facing the future.

As far as I know it's not all about me.

But I am faced with the fact that
I have to take better care of me.

There are a few realities that I have to face
and a few challenges.
all links are random examples...
One: Find an apartment I can afford.
Apartment hunt ?
Two: Get a permanent job I enjoy.
Jobs I want?
Three: Oh I don't know, find a boyfriend...
Singles group?
Four: Take courses that will help me do what I want to do.
Five: Take a vacation because all that sounds tiring...
Six: Take care of all that paperwork I have been putting off.
Seven: Save some money in case I live long enough to retire.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Books, Newspapers and Magazines

What do you like to read?
I find myself reading more newspapers as of late. For the most part it's for research. It's a great resource!
Some magazines catch my short attention span like Readers Digest and Macleans...
Reading blogs seems to take up more of my time and now I am scrambling to find time for books. I have 3 or 4 books just waiting for me to sit down and finish them.
I wanted to remind people of this event coming up.
I was always encouraged to read all I can. My family is a family of readers.
Just a little note from my boss.

As you may know, ABC CANADA Literacy Foundation is the national coordinator of ABC CANADA Family Literacy Day®, held annually on January 27. This special day promotes the importance of reading and learning as a family, and encourages the development of lifelong readers.

For more information on ABC CANADA Family Literacy Day®, please visit:


Bryan Cantley
VP Member Services
Canadian Newspaper Association

Le 2 janvier 2007


Comme vous le savez, la Fondation pour l’alphabétisation ABC CANADA est la coordonnatrice nationale de la Journée de l’alphabétisation familialeMD (JAF) qui se tient tous les 27 janvier. Cette journée spéciale vise à souligner l’importance de la lecture et de l’apprentissage en famille et à encourager la formation de lecteurs à vie.

Pour en savoir davantage sur la Journée de l’alphabétisation familialeMD, visitez

En vous remerciant encore une fois pour votre soutien continu à la cause de l’alphabétisation, nous vous prions d’agréer, Madame, Monsieur, nos salutations distinguées.

Bryan Cantley,
vice-président, Services aux membres

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Saturday, January 13, 2007

The list you may heard before... from my emails

ONE. Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.

TWO. Marry a man/woman you love to talk to. As you get older, their conversational skills will be as important as any other.

THREE. Don't believe all you hear, spend all you have or sleep all you want.

FOUR. When you say, "I love you," mean it.

FIVE. When you say, "I'm sorry," look the person in the eye.

SIX. Be engaged at least six months before you get married.

SEVEN. Believe in love at first sight.

EIGHT. Never laugh at anyone's dream. People who don't have dreams don't have much.

NINE. Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt but it's the only way to live life completely.

TEN. In disagreements, fight fairly. No name calling.

ELEVEN. Don't judge people by their relatives.

TWELVE. Talk slowly but think quickly.

THIRTEEN. When someone asks you a question you don't want to answer, smile and ask, "Why do you want to know?"

FOURTEEN. Remember that great love and great achievements involve great risk.

FIFTEEN. Say "bless you" when you hear someone sneeze.

SIXTEEN. When you lose, don't lose the lesson

SEVENTEEN. Remember the three R's: Respect for self; Respect for others; and responsibility for all your actions.

EIGHTEEN. Don't let a little dispute injure a great friendship.

NINETEEN. When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.

TWENTY. Smile when picking up the phone. The caller will hear it in your voice.

TWENTY-ONE. Spend some time alone.

I got this list from my email... I took off all the stuff that tells you to pass it along...
that part of emails bugs me... but I like what it's saying without that.

Diet issues?

Not diet! Just life style changes. You just have to decide to do it.
I don't drink soft drink anymore. I drink more water. I don't have the meal deal when I do eat at a fast food joint I just have the burger, no fries, no drink.
I don't think in terms of what's for desert. Sweet things are only bought when I really want them...
I 'trick' myself into walking more. I listen to music as I walk to keep me distracted. I walk home 6k when the weather permits. I'll walk to the next subway station if I can rather than the one closest.
I don't need a gym, or classes or diet food, or an exercise tape... those are all nice but they don't work for me. Just making a few choices to eat better and walk more and not to worry about the results... that works for me. I have lost over 35lb over the past 2 years...and I feel so much better for it.
At 41 I am in better shape than I was at 31.

Me 4 years ago compared to this past July.

Or Now... I don't think I could have done this 10 years ago.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Jan 4th 2006 I started blogging

This is post # 295

This is the link to my very first blog post.

When I started blogging this time last year I had no idea where it would bring me.

It brought me to good friends like the stroumboulopouli and the strombo forum and many more on the links to your right.

I met interesting characters like Kyle of One Red Paperclip.

I met George Stroumboulopoulos and Jian Ghomeshi of The Hour along with the wonderful crew of The Hour. The one member of that crew that was key in nudging my life in a new direction is Jeremy, the original Web Producer of The Hour. He linked this blog to The Hour's website via the blogtracker when I wrote a post about George breaking the news about Jose being traded...Over the next few months Jeremy answered my emails and sparked my brain. was that just this past spring? Bloggers gathered, we created the stroumboulopouli and by doing that with Alana, Allison, Becky, Barbara B, Evelyne and Jas, it gave me more inspiration and more confidence to do different things. George is my inspiration as well. He tend to inspire all kinds of people, as I meet more and more of his fans I hear it all the time. You too eh?

I moved to Toronto over the summer because there is more opportunities in the media industry and more things for me to blog about.
I'm a Leo, I need to be in the action.
I love to be free to go to The Hour if I am going to write about it.
I need to grow and stretch and learn and experience new things and blog about it...this blog is a testament to that.
I do currently have a job in media and it's giving me great experience. I won't say where.
You got it, I don't blog about everything. I hope my blog is entertaining to you. To me it has been a therapy helping me in my period of mourning to become who I am today. I started it trying to be... able to step to the next level in my life.

I have taken many small steps and missteps (you learn more from those) in this last year.
I would like to thank all the people in my life, my family, my friends on-line, my friends in Montreal past and present, my co-workers, my new friends in Toronto, all the people who put up with me. So sweet of you.

My love is Graham MacNicoll who died on June 2nd 2004. The journey with you in it for those three years helps me get through the rest of lifes journey. I feel your energy around at this moment and in odd moments.
I wish you were here physically every day. How different would that journey be?

Don't worry about me Graham, I won't be sad and I won't be lonely. Those were not things I was trying to be, but things I was trying not to be.

Being myself now that I know who that is.
Barbara W.

Happy New Year!