Near the Old Man of Storr, Scotland I took this in 2004

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Two great Quotes and a Cute Word!

Here are two quotes, and a cute word that I’ve just recently found.
 The first quote is from a novel called Hallowe’en Party, by Agatha Christie. The quote is from a character called Mrs. Butler: she is talking about children!
“They acquire puppy fat and look like well-fattened pigs sometimes.”

The second quote is from the programme, Rosemary and Thyme; two professional gardeners who also help solve crimes, but there’s nothing Miss Marple-esque or dithering about them.

This quote is from an episode called Agua Cadaver. Rosemary and Laura have gone to Spain to work on the garden of a married, ex-boyfriend of Rosemary’s who still likes her, and has asked her to go and live with him in Spain.
Says Rosemary, to Laura’s question about whether or not she will shack up with him: “He’s got a wife, and I’ve got a life.”
I love that quote. As I say, these are not your dithering female sleuths, at all.

And finally, a cute word, which I hadn’t met before, and found in a story called The A.B.C. Murders, again by the doyenne of the cozy murder genre, Ms. Christie.

Here’s the word, "snuggery”, and even better, here’s the quote to give it context.

A man named Mr. Barnard is inviting detectives, and police into his and his wife’s “minute bungalow.”
They introduce themselves to him, and then he says  to the group, “Come into the snuggery…”
If the word was at all unclear, the narrator, Captain Hastings, gives clarity to it by saying: “..we were ensconced in the livingroom..”, but it’s so much cuter to say snuggery, rather than living room with mean little adjectives in front.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

All about Ravioli

So I had a yen, the other day, to make ravioli. It's not too, hard, but I don't have a pasta machine or anything, so it was very "labour intensive", as it were.

First step, make the dough, (flour, water, olive oil, eggs, salt)
Knead dough. Then roll it into a ball, and wrap it in wax paper, or cling film,  and leave it in the fridge for an hour.

In the meantime, get working on your stuffing. Mine was caramelized red onions, with dried porcini mushrooms, that I had let soak in boiling water, along with some spinach, cranberry goat’s cheese, and crushed whole hazelnuts. I also added fresh lime juice. In a word: yum!

Then, for me, until I found a youtube video of chef Mario Battali on Martha Stewart, making ravioli, I was really having a difficult time figuring out how to stuff/ tuck everything in. My first batch looked like a cross between wontons, and little monster explosions. My ensuing batches looked better, thanks to ol’ Mario who had a pretty nifty trick for getting the top layer and bottom layer of dough to stick together.

First, he laid out his two sheets of dough, and instead of slabbing on his filling, as I had done first, he just put down a few wee dollops , then added the top sheet, and made partitions with his hand. Then he started to stick the dough together, with his fingers. Then, this is the cool part, he took a cookie cutter, and just pushed it into the top sheet of dough, over his covered dollop of filling, and worked it through until he had a totally contained, round raviolo!


After that, here are the rest of the steps:

1)   Place a few ravioli, like 5-6, depending on how big, or little you make them, in a pot of boiling water. Let them cook for a few minutes.
2)   Then, strain then, I forgot to drain them with cold water, and put them in a container and add your sauce.
3)   Buon' appetito!

The raw ravioli. Notice the scary little one on the right,my first batch, before Mario.
The boiling of the ravioli.
Almost done; all cooked, dressed and undressed ravioli co-mingling.

A fancy close-up!


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Do you believe?

Here's some graffiti I saw the other day on the sidewalk nearing Kensington; like a beautiful omen, there was the word " Unicorns".

We all need more unicorns in our lives. 
The rest of the message said "Time and Space"
I think  "Unicorns" was at the beginning. I was walking north, and the message was written starting north going south, down the bend of the street :)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Shameful Things

I found this photo online, I can't remember the site I got it from. I'm using it because  a) I think it's awesome, and b) Shame on Uganda, indeed!

 Uganda is hoping that the world turns a blind eye to its evil of making being queer a crime punishable by death.

Nigeria too wants to criminalize being queer, including ending funding to queer rights organizations, so that queer people will be even more marginalized in that region of the world.

Now, on to Israel. So, Hamas, a militant, anti-Israel hate group and the State of Israel have agreed to an imposed cease-fire. Ok, fine. Though, here are the facts. Hamas has launched over 420 missiles into Israel, 420!! Israel has a kick-ass defense system and has stopped many of the missiles from entering the rest of the country.

Apart from Palestinians feeling justified in their vicious hate, with Hamas heading it all, the whole fucking world is totally biased against the state of Israel.
Two things: 1) Palestine is not a country. This fact has been recognized by the UN.
                     2) Anti-Jewish hate continues to frighteningly rise around the world. Organizations that sound legit, such as The World Social Forum, which I had to look up, and learned about in the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal newsletter, will be all about helping Palestine , at the event being hosted by Brazil, this year. What’s more, my idiot country is sending a rep. to the Forum from the postal worker's union. Why? What the hell do postal workers have to do with hate -based politics?! Moreover, postal workers are federal agents, ergo, our government is surreptitiously saying that it, in fact, doesn't support Israel, though, outwardly it says it does.

Ok three things: Israel not only has every right to defend itself, it is the ONLY country in that entire region of the world where queer rights exist.
This article outlines the politics of queer rights in Israel. 

Israel, unlike all of its Muslim neighbouring countries, and area=Palestine, is very supportive of women's rights, and women's equality (the political Hasidim notwithstanding).

Here's an article written by a woman living in Israel working for the US-based National Council for Jewish Women, about women's reproductive rights in Israel.

This past year Israel created a law banning underweight models from working. This made headlines, no other country has followed suit..yet?

Israel also rallies for the rights of non-human animals.

Last year, Israel outlawed the declawing of cats! Canada, among many countries, has yet to follow.

Here’s an article about the woman who founded the Israeli SPCA

That Israel fights back is a given. Violence and war are horrible realities, made worse by the fact that , in the case of Israel, that country has been having to defend its existence even before it was declared a nation-state. For all the shit that gets talked about that country, Israel unlike all the Muslims in the area is not a medieval throwback of a country where being queer will get you murdered, or where you will get stoned to death for, say, looking at someone you aren't married to.

Here in Toronto we have a hate group called Queers Against Israeli Apartheid that has been marching in Toronto's Gay Pride parade for the past few years.  Friends of Simon Wiesenthal ( FSW) has been denouncing that group as a hate group. Pride receives funding for the parade, and FSW has been asking the city to revoke funding to the parade if it continues to support hate. To date, the group is still being permitted to march in the upcoming parade this Summer. 
 This link  gives clear facts about what has been going on recently in Israel and the Gaza zone.

Ignorance and sheer biased stupidity continue to fuel people's warped realities about Israel. Israel not only has no allies in its region, but, fewer and fewer people and countries and organizations choose to publicly lend their voice in support of the Jewish state and its right to exist, and that's what this is all about. 

I remember once, some years ago, talking about Israel with someone I worked with. I was shocked when he said that Jewish people didn't need Israel, they had Canada or Argentina as places to live. I was livid. He believed that Israel should  belong to the Muslims, or more rightly, the Islamists=Palestinians, and because the Jewish people had displaced them ,they, he felt, should leave. 

Sadly, I think many people similarly to him;that even after all the horrors of the Holocaust, Jewish people still don't belong in Israel. Israel is a Jewish state; it is the only one in the world. There are 50 Muslim states in the world, Palestine is not one of them because it is not a state. Israel has to constantly defend itself  against all the Muslim countries, not just because it exists, but because it exits among so much anti-Jewish hate. We can't say anti- Semitism when so many of those who hate Israel are also Semites.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


I knew that Barack Obama would win, though, I'll admit I was getting scared early on last night as the polls started to close, and the grand dragon seemed to be in the lead. Well, not for long! 

 Indeed, Obama is the voice for change and progressive actions for America. He won by more than 80,000 votes, say some analysts, or more than 100 electoral college votes; not counting the states that hadn't finished counting their ballots by the time he went past 270 to sweep to his victory!

Obama has done for America and voter turn out, especially among Black and other non-white voters, what Nelson Mandela did for his people during his election in apartheid stricken South Africa. Both men mobilized the masses, and got people  especially of colour to the polls, in droves. Both encouraged the "forgotten masses" to vote by using tools that are accessible to all. 

In his first term, Obama got people to the polls en masse, by heavily relying on social media as an important communication tool. His campaign was all about creating clear communication, and making himself accessible. It worked, he won. 

In 1994, Mandela got Black people to the polls for the very first time in South Africa's very racist history. Most of the rural people were illiterate, and wouldn't be able to read a ballot card, so the ANC created a ballot card with all the candidates colour photos on it. That was ingenious, and history was created, as South Africa finally had it's first leader of colour!
                      South African ballot card, from 1994
Obama, true to his words, always manages to get people "fired up, ready to go!", to quote him. This time around people knew how life-or-death this election was, and astoundingly waited in line for as long as 6 hours, or more, to cast their ballots. 6 hours! That's unheard of in first world countries, isn't it? But then again, a nation of 300,000,000 people battling issues that are usually reserved for the third world knew what the outcome would be if they didn't choose the only person with a feminist agenda, a socialist agenda, and an agenda of compassion, and direct action.
Thankfully, Obama's words fired people  up enough  and created an important impact   because Americans were sure not going to let a sheet wearing dragon called mitten win.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Some friends I made on my trip to Scotland

On my recent trip to Scotland, I made some cute friends; the 
 humans I met weren't nearly as cute.
This is a Highland cow, I've forgotten her name but she's 1 and a half. How cute?!

 This little cutie would greet me everyday by running full-tilt at me, which scared the crap out of me at first, until I realized that she was waiting for snacks. She would run, and come right up to me licking her little lips, waiting. Her little friends would stand further afield licking their lips too. She did get snacks from me:)Her friends didn't because they were too shy to really come close, and if I went too close to them they would trot away.
 I love this wee dog, Saffie. She walked me everywhere, showed me her belly, and even protected me from a big, scary biting dog!
How witchy and cute!

Friday, October 5, 2012

A Sign of the Times

                 How cute is this?! I think I may bring my girls..too cute

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Presidential Debates: Round 1

Last night, during the first round of presidential debates, Barak Obama was his usual eloquent, erudite self, and, as always, behaved like a gentleman as he debated against the grand dragon mit(tten) romney.

mitten, as he will heretofore be referred to as, behaved just like himself: the filthy, bullying, lying, hateful bigot, who had the nerve to imply very clearly that the President was a liar and simply made up his facts!

Obama didn’t stoop to the smear-tactics of mitten, he rose above the slander, always looked the dragon directly in the eyes with a clear countenance, and never once interrupted him.

The dragon not only bullied his way into interrupting the President, many times, but also the pathetic mediator whose job it was to mediate, and to not allow one opponent to railroad everyone. However, the mediator was a bumbling loser who refused to do his job, and so the dragon got heaps more air time.  How the hell is that fair?!

At one point mitten tripped himself up not hard with his zero IQ, and talked about “poor people”, and then quickly realized what he had just done; a modern-day ross perot- “you people”. He then tried to quickly redress it by covering it over saying instead “Low-income people”. Too late mitten. We saw your face as you realized you’d fucked up out loud, and live, and we heard you condescend to all non-billionaires!

I hope America won’t allow the wool of mitten’s grand dragon sheet to be pulled over their eyes.

America needs Barak Obama for another term, though if they don’t vote for him, they deserve the shit that mr. liar- liar- burning -cross -on- fire hands out.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

It Takes a Village to Raise a Misogynist


Things I overheard today , the eve before my Federal Government decides whether abortion can, and should still be free and available to all women in Canada.

This first conversation snippet I overheard while at Rexall. There were 2 men and a woman, standing in an aisle holding a conversation. One of the men was talking at the top of his lungs:
“...Oh yeah, by the way, this is my wife.” She works for me.” The man who spoke had been talking for about 5 minutes before it dawned on him to vaguely mention “the wife”, no name, nothing else. Mind, she didn’t speak up either. Also notice the preposition he used, "for", not with.

“My wife works for me too” said the other caveman.
One of these two neanderthals, I don't know which, I was in another aisle, then went on to say he had children at home, and kept referring to them as his children, and how he looks after them or sees them when he gets home. I guess the wife of his who also works for him is exempt from “wife duties?” Could it be?

No, it’s just that men are very, very selfish. Men always talk about themselves, first. They see the world in terms of how it relates to them and their viewpoint.
“My kids, my wife…me, me me.”

Same store..while I was at the cash..the man manager to the female cashier:
“girl-managers, … we need to get the girls...”
 Me to the cashier: “He just said girl-manager, what about boy-manager?
Her: “Yeah, girls vs boys. There are some things that need heavy lifting, so…

I raised my eyebrows in disgust.

Earlier this evening I was watching stupid shows with heterosexual couples who want to buy houses. In the first show, the male provided the oooh so big, $15,000 down payment, and then said to the woman, who was purportedly his girlfriend, never “partner”, that he should make the decisions about what to put in the house because he had paid.
 She was upset, but did nothing. He  kept saying  he was happy to have a space for himself, in his new home. She kept trying to correct him, and get him to be inclusive, but really, if you have to correct someone and fucking remind them to value you, you've lost the plot!

The idiot man who was designing the house, put up black and white photos the caveman had taken on trips.The designer said he hadn't seen even one photo with the girlfriend in it, and still he put them up. She playfully punched her boyfriend, cuz she was real upset. Meanwhile the boyfriend complimented himself on his artistic skill. Wow!

What I want to know is, why do women stay? Why put up with a demented, barbaric, rude, and, lest we forget, selfish caveman? Why?

The next show, same idea, only this time said young, het couple were getting an $85, 000 down payment from the husband’s parents. Sounds ok. The problems?

The parents were very openly rude to their son’s wife, and their son had absolutely zero backbone. The parents were insulting their daughter-in-law in front of the son, and he’d keep quiet.
Again, I gotta ask, why the fuck would you stay?!!! Your spouse won’t stand up for you, and your in-laws are misogynist throw-backs. If you stay, you too have no spine.

“Abortion should always be free. Do not support motion M-312! Supporting it will erode Canada's image as a freedom-supporting, progressive nation. If you criminalize my right to choose, you will turn Canada into an oligarchy of misogyny”

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Another Fast

First, I gotta say, I hate " the new look" of Blogger.Why does everything have to always have a " new look". Clearly, people have too much time on their hands  and that's why they feel compelled  to mess with the old look that worked perfectly fine. Hotmail is forever doing this, a system I use at work as well. Why on earth can't these people leave well enough alone is what I'd like to know.

Anywho, here I am doing a(nother) fast...My last one was back in April, so 2011, and it was your bog-standard 24 hour lemon-honey-water fast.

I'm aiming for 30 hours-maybe 36, this time round. I'm not ready for 48 hours just yet. I'm at hour 25.5 now. This time I'm doing water only. I started with lime ( I have no lemons) honey and water. Then, moved on to water with a pinch of Himalayan salt in it.

Why add salt to water? Pure salt helps to pull toxins out of you, while helping your body to stabilize itself.

Here's a great link I found about the pros of using natural salt vs. the evil cons of using  processed "table salt"

Right now, I'm not  too hungry, but yesterday and last night were killer. So, what did I do? I  watched "Come Dine With Me", naturally!  I stayed up as long as I could, so I'd be really tired and sleep without feeling hungry. Kind of worked.

 Here's another interesting link all about Himalayan salt; how to use it, what's it's benefits are, and such like.

Right now, I'm closing in on 26 hours. I'll see how much longer I can go. I feel kind of lethargic, and it's a task to not focus on food.

Well, we'll see how I go, and more importantly, how I feel when I finish.
 A belated Shana Tova to all, and a pre-emptive Yom Kippur!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

More rain blessings!

  I love the rain. The way the earth smells when everything gets wet always reminds me of camping!

It's pouring right now, and I got caught in it, and got pretty  drenched. 
A half an hour ago, on my way back from the dentist, which is when I got soaked, walking to the bus stop, I got on the bus with the same driver I had had heading to the dentist.   
The driver was Caribbean I think, but he had a soft voice, and his accent also sounded like it could have come from a west African nation too.  We greeted each other, and he asked how I was,I said "soaked"; he said "That's ok."  I figured he was busy, and didn't really care about my having got soaked, especially cuz he was dry. So, I persisted and added "My pants are completely wet."  Then he responded by saying 
" Now you are a blessed woman."

I thought about the profundity of that statement, and said, "It's true", thanked him and thought of Rain being a blessing, for Hawai'ian people, for many indigenous people, and how much more non-white people, often non-WASPs, specifically, know about the earth, and the magick of it.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Pithy thought from The Dalai Lama

This is from an email ; it's a chain mail, from things the Dalai Lama has said. This is my favourite of all the deep thoughts in the email, because it's both funny and true!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Strawberry Pie

My totally vegan strawberry pie which I made yesterday. Yum. Yum Yum. I used vegan Becel in the dough, crust and bottom, and in the freaking good!

Saturday, August 11, 2012


how yum does this look?
My chapchae looking suitably fancy
I've  had a desire lately, to make chapchae,which  is a Korean noodle salad. All the recipes I read online told me 10 minutes would be all I'd need to do the prep. Maybe 10 minutes in like the year 1800, I don't know who's 10 minutes. I spent about an hour cutting the carrots into wee "matchstick" size pieces, slicing the green onions, finely dicing the garlic..I had to break out the ol' Ginsu for that.

There are heaps of steps, including cutting the noodles once they've been cooled, with scissors, and the same for the spinach, but it so worth it, because yum!

still in the  giant mixing bowl


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Hate can be unlearned

Why the fuck are black people, mainly black Americans, so fucking homophobic?!
This is a rhetorical question.
I'm not looking for answers; that would only give credence to the bullshit.

I saw a stupid video today on BET by a woman who looks like an ugly drag queen , who calls her self  just Marsha. Her video was, I guess, supposed to be about “Down Low Brothers”. I find that term disgusting, it refers to black men who lie about who they are--, because they are so afraid of the hate in "the community",  but really, what fucking community?! 

These DLBs live a lie  and pretend to be 100% het,  but really they are  either  secretly gay or maybe bi, and, cheat on their  female partners with men.  This hate which leads to subterfuge is why AIDS is still on the rise. In fact, "To date, over 230,000 African Americans have died of AIDS. The estimated lifetime risk of becoming infected with HIV is 1 in 16 for black males, " (

If dialogue was encouraged about issues of  sexual identity, in  "the community" , chiefly  within the black church,  and even in other hate-faith communities, perhaps these "brothers" could be who they are: proud queer men.  I don't advocate lying or cheating, nor do I think maintaining walls of hate fuelled by idiotic "scripture" is in any way ok. 

Telling people, ( one's "flock") shit about  an energy/ or being, sometimes referred to as god,  who hates, and specifically hates queer people, is fucked up. 

 Add to that,  you knowing, fully, that you are gay/queer while listening to the hate-filled rhetoric of church  shit. The church shit  tells you that god loves all..all except you, (and Jewish people, even though Jesus was Jewish, and. the long list of other "undesirables" continues...) The hate tells you that you are totally hated by this thing called god who is supposed to love all. That much crap has no positive outcomes.  

Then,  the queer, in this case, black church-goer now feels fear,  shame, hate,  and mountains of terror, at being who she/he is. 

Fear is what pushes heaps of men, in the case of the DLBs, black men, and certainly women as well, so far into the closet they would prefer to live in total denial rather than face the wrath of their 'community' because they  are too petrified to truly live out loud and proud. All because of hate, which is just fear.

At any rate, Marsha’s video, much like her “ look”, her song and voice are total garbage.

I assume her video is considered “enlightened” I guess, in that it, omg, had images of two gay men, holding hands, and trying, I think, to find each other, through all of the hate and bigotry around them. 

Ok, so no nasty words are used out-right to refer to queer people, or queer, black men, but naturally one of the pair had to get jumped by a gang of angry black, hard-core bible-fuckers.  I bet Marsha's thinking for the attack scene, was that it's real, and it's important to keep shit real. We know the mob are   religious nuts because they are homophobes, and in the ghetto.  

We assume the man who was walking with his boyfriend is murdered, by the mob, and the next scene we see is of his partner commit suicide.

Marsha must be one of those bible- fucking types who wants to make some kind of highly convoluted point about queer men, I guess, and maybe what their queerness, and keeping it on the down low, while playing het, is doing to "the community"!!

Whatever her point was, or wasn’t, I’d like to know what the hell she and the director were thinking when they decided on the scene I mentioned above where the two men; the couple, who may have just come out and are newly dating each other, walk hand-in-hand in the flipping ghetto?!  The ghetto, a place rife with ideals of what hyper-masculinity and femininity are supposed to be. That made no fucking sense. Presumably the two men were from the same ghetto, so they would have known how things work in ghetto culture regarding gayness and being open in a homophobic, macho, religious community.

So much pisses me off about this video. To start with:

Why didn’t the singer have a scene with police investigating the murder/gang attack? This would have shown us that violence towards queer people is not ok, or tolerated, especially by the singer herself.
Why could we not hear/make sense of any of the lyrics?
Why didn’t she have a scene where people were grieving/mourning  the murdered man?
Why were there no scenes of acceptance of the male couple by their friends/family?

At the end, Marsha had an open letter to the viewers up on the screen, talking about “accepting alternative lifestyles”
I hate the term alternative lifestyle with reference to being and living a queer existence.
It’s such a demeaning, stupid ignorant word. Being queer doesn’t mean you live in a circus, with a bearded lady with a meth addiction.

I thought the term died a long time ago, but, apparently not in the homophobic black communities. 

If Marsha truly wanted to pass on a message of acceptance, she would have made a totally different video. Cristina’s Aguilera’s 
“I am beautiful” video comes to mind. We see male couples having a smooch, among other images of love.

Hip-hop, and RnB that promote the hateful refrain of pin-headed, “religious teachings” encouraged by black homophobes create a vacuum of isolation and backwardness within their so-called community.
In order to combat  homophobic hate, we must  keep shining our light, and keep creating change, and speaking up against hate.

There are currently 12 countries that have legalized queer marriage, they are :
1.     Holland
2.     Belgium
3.     Spain
4.     Canada
5.     South Africa ( The only country on that continent that supports queer rights in its constitution!)
6.     Norway
7.     Sweden
8.     Portugal
9.     Iceland
10.  Argentina
11.  Denmark
12.  Mexico, though it's legal federally, only 2 states perform marriages
There is another group of countries, about 20, that  have granted queer couples civil-union status, not exactly the same as marriage, with respect to certain rights, including adoption etc., but a good start. Of those countries The United States grants civil unions to queer couples in 6 states, and Australia  in only 2 states.
  Sure, it's still flawed, yes, but, momentum is gathering.

What surprises me, is that Latin America; a region known for being dominated by backwards religious fools, is much more progressive regarding queer partnerships, than Australia, which was the first country in the world to give women the right to vote.

In the next 5-ten years, more formerly backwards countries will join the growing list of countries that are starting to realize that LGBTQ rights and issues are human rights issues, and therefore they concern everybody.

Countries that have given their queer citizens the option to legally marry, have not only raised the bar for human rights issues, they have raised their own social profiles on the world stage.

Homophobia, like any kind of hate, is taught behavior. Therefore, we can unlearn hate and learn to love.