Charles Bukowski

“Sometimes you climb out of bed in the morning and you think, I’m not going to make it, but you laugh inside — remembering all the times you’ve felt that way.”

 

“I’ve never been lonely. I’ve been in a room — I’ve felt suicidal. I’ve been depressed. I’ve felt awful — awful beyond all — but I never felt that one other person could enter that room and cure what was bothering me…or that any number of people could enter that room. In other words, loneliness is something I’ve never been bothered with because I’ve always had this terrible itch for solitude. It’s being at a party, or at a stadium full of people cheering for something, that I might feel loneliness.”

 

“We’re all going to die, all of us, what a circus! That alone should make us love each other but it doesn’t. We are terrorized and flattened by trivialities, we are eaten up by nothing.”

 

“If you’re going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don’t even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery–isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you’re going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is.”
Factotum

 

Raw with Love

“I will remember the kisses
our lips raw with love
and how you gave me
everything you had
and how I
offered you what was left of
me,
and I will remember your small room
the feel of you
the light in the window
your records
your books
our morning coffee
our noons our nights
our bodies spilled together
sleeping
the tiny flowing currents
immediate and forever
your leg my leg
your arm my arm
your smile and the warmth
of you
who made me laugh
again.”

 

Bluebird

there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I’m too tough for him,
I say, stay in there, I’m not going
to let anybody see
you.
there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I pour whiskey on him and inhale
cigarette smoke
and the ****s and the bartenders
and the grocery clerks
never know that
he’s
in there.

there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I’m too tough for him,
I say,
stay down, do you want to mess
me up?
you want to screw up the
works?
you want to blow my book sales in
Europe?
there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I’m too clever, I only let him out
at night sometimes
when everybody’s asleep.
I say, I know that you’re there,
so don’t be
sad.
then I put him back,
but he’s singing a little
in there, I haven’t quite let him
die
and we sleep together like
that
with our
secret pact
and it’s nice enough to
make a man
weep, but I don’t
weep, do
you?

GIRLS Graphics

I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t enjoy the HBO hit, GIRLS.

I started watching last year, and still get giddy every time I’m about to watch a new episode.

The show was created by Lena Dunham, who prior to the show had with little experience in the television world. BUT, she had an even more powerful weapon; the support of Judd Apatow. Together they have managed to pull off an incredible product that is already in its third season.

While similar to Sex and the City, GIRLS is its own animal. The show follows the lives of four young women in New York City who are struggling to make it in the world. Each character is very different, and the girls aren’t necessarily best friends – giving it a different vibe than Sex and the City.

What I love most about the show are the quips, and hilarious insights that the characters have. Here are a few of my favourite graphic quotes.

Visualize This

PART 1: I’m going to describe an image, and if you’re reading, please try to visualize it in your mind.

This photograph is one that vividly uses colour and lighting to capture a certain exterior that showcases the true beauty of the natural world. It looks as if this was taken late at night due to the swirling violet sky, and the extreme lightness near the bottom of the photograph suggests the sun is just beginning to rise.

This photo consists of a large tree that appears to be an oak or cherry blossom in the very center, supporting a small tire swing whose height is equal to about one third of the shot. The swing is strategically placed in the peak of the light, almost white patch of brightness, making it very sharp and easy to make out. The area of brightness also begins to disperse into a few wisps of clouds to the left of the tree. In the bottom right hand corner there are two figures that are merely silhouettes, making it hard to determine their gender and age, though it is clear they are in a sprint heading toward the tree. They are prodding along grass which vary in short length throughout the picture, yet seem to have their heads high with their eyes fixed on their destination.

The sky is a very intense sight as it drastically changes in hues, exhibiting patches of pink, yellow, purple, and soft blue. The whole shot is a serene wash of blending colour, and the tree and running figures tend to hold your gaze with curiosity. The layout is extremely simplistic and pleasing to the eye, though the tree is very intricate in the sense that its branches are scattered and unique in shape with small buds or leaves spurting out in all directions.

The deep purple at the top of the photograph blends in to the top branches making it hard to see where the tree actually ends, and the illusion of the tree growing beyond the frame in a limitless sense is thrust upon us. The assumption can be made that it is spring time as there is still life on the trees branches even though it doesnʼt appear to be fully in bloom, and grass is still visible as bodies in light clothing litter the shot. If one didnʼt know this was a photograph it could appear to be an illustration or painting, as everything is very one dimensional and angled straight toward the camera.

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What Ibiza Is Really Like

You’ve heard the Pitbull songs.

I’m talking about Ibiza, Spain.

Ibiza is a small island off the coast of Valencia that is known for its nightlife and crazy clubs.

I can attest to that.

I backpacked around Europe with my best friend in 2011 and we decided that Ibiza was a must see. Plus, we’d be there for my 20th birthday.

Sold.

I should mention that backpacking can be very hard on you.  We tried to visit as many places as we could, in a very short time span.  “Doing” Rome and Prague in two days is not nearly long enough, and carrying around a heavy load on your back while trying to get help from non-English speakers can be, erm, tough. But, don’t get me wrong – I love travelling more than anything else.

So we eventually made it to Spain.  First we visited Barcelona, then Valencia, and from there we took a ferry to Ibiza. Before going you have to decide what side of the island you want to stay on, either San Antonio or Playa D’en Bossa. We didn’t know the difference and heard San Antonio was more of a party spot, so we decided to go there and stay at Hostel Roca.

When me and my friend Jasmine arrived, it was around 8 pm on a Friday –  peak drinking time.  It was a surreal experience. People in their late teens and mid twenties were about the only people we saw. There were no kids, and definitely no one over 30. Everyone looked… like a party animal. Basically every girl I saw looked like they were from a Ke$ha video, with a painted face and little to no clothing.  I remember seeing one girl wearing full leopard body paint with glittery angel wings. Everyone was drinking in the street, screaming and singing, and no one batted an eye – this was the norm here.

The island was beautiful, with beaches everywhere and leafy palm trees scattered about the roads.  Daytime in Ibiza is very serene, mostly people lounge around the beaches or eat hangover food in the shade and take advantage of siestas (afternoon naps). There was a main bus depot in the middle of San Antonio that took you all around the island so you could check out one of their many beaches.

A beach we went to.

We discovered that you had to buy nightclub tickets at stores in San Antonio before going or prices were jacked up at the door, and the cheapest tickets here were 60 EUR ($80 Canadian ish), and went up to 150 EUR. Ouch. I think I naively thought that we’d get deals for being “girls” but that wasn’t the case.

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Target Hits the Mark?

On a glorious Monday around 10:00, I embarked on a journey. I went to Target Canada. Target Southdale to be specific, plastered on the edge of a blistery strip mall in Winnipeg.

I remember the first time I ever went to Target; I was a little late to hop on the bandwagon and first walked through their red doors in late 2011.  I went to the Grand Forks location, and afterwards I decided that it was a great place to shop with surprisingly nice clothes. I ended up buying a bathing suit and a few tops. Target had a lot of good deals, but keep in mind that the States is cheaper in general. (Or was.. what’s our dollar at again?)

So fast forward to last year when I found out that Winnipeg would be replacing its dying Zellers stores with multiple Target franchises.  I first went on opening day and joined the masses into the chaos.  Strangely enough, me and most people I talked to all disliked the store, claiming it wasn’t what we expected – but unable to put our finger on why.

This specific Monday morning wasn’t very busy.  I noticed a few mothers with their children, a few old men who seemed to enjoy just walking around, and some early morning grocery shoppers who lazily pushed around their carts in search of a good deal.

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20 Untranslatable Words

Here is a compilation of interesting words that are untranslatable to English.  They are taken directly from: betterthanenglish.com, matadornetwork.com, and blog.maptia.com.

 

1. Toska (Russian)

Vladmir Nabokov describes it best: “No single word in English renders all the shades of toska. At its deepest and most painful, it is a sensation of great spiritual anguish, often without any specific cause. At less morbid levels it is a dull ache of the soul, a longing with nothing to long for, a sick pining, a vague restlessness, mental throes, yearning. In particular cases it may be the desire for somebody or something specific, nostalgia, love-sickness. At the lowest level it grades into ennui, boredom.”

 

2. Attaccabottoni (Italian)

A boring person who corners people and tells long, sad tales.

 

3. Jayus (Indonesian)

“A joke so poorly told and so unfunny that one cannot help but laugh.” (Altalang.com)

 

4. Iktsuarpok (Inuit)

“To go outside to check if anyone is coming.” (Altalang.com)

 

5. Resfeber (Swedish)

 To be jittery before undertaking a journey.

 

6. Kyoikumama (Japanese)

“A mother who relentlessly pushes her children toward academic achievement.”

 

7. Tartle (Scottish)

The act of hestitating while introducing someone because you’ve forgotten their name. (Altalang.com)

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What I’ve Learned

Esquire magazine has conducted more than 300 interviews with artists, athletes, celebrities, entrepreneurs, musicians, politicians, scientists and writers. They have since published a series of articles called What I’ve Learned, which are comprised of interesting quotes these people say. They have also published a “Meaning of Life” issue which included more in-depth interviews.

Here are some of my favourite lines:

angelina-jolie-esquire-1

You don’t accidentally become an asshole. It takes a bit of work.
-Ozzy Osbourne

Depression is a luxury I still can’t afford. 
-50 Cent

Natural beauty takes at least two hours in front of a mirror.
-Pamela Anderson

My definition of peace is having no noise in my head.
-Eric Clapton

No matter what you do or where you are, you’re going to be missing out on something.
-Alan Arkin

My life is so bizarre, it’s just easier to be honest.
-David Blaine

You have to view things in the context of your life expectancy.
-Francis Ford Coppola

I don’t think anybody’s necessarily ready for death. You can only hope that when it approaches, you feel like you’ve said what you wanted to say. Nobody wants to go out in mid-sentence.
-Johnny Depp

Nobody knows what anticipation is anymore. Everything is so immediate. No more standing outside Tower Records in a long line.
-Joan Jett

To me, success is simply the opposite of failure.
-Dwight Shrute

I’ve never felt like I had very much to say. Maybe that’ll come later in life.
-Chloe Sevigny

They say that the human smile is in fact one of those primordial things — that in fact it’s a showing of teeth, that it’s a warning. That when we smile, in a primeval way it has to do with fear.
-Christopher Walken

People don’t know the real you unless you tell them.
-Vanna White

Courage is a mindless thing. People say, “Wow! How could you do that?” And you say, “How could I not do that?”
-Neil Young

The remote has saved my sanity.
-Fred Willard

I’ve never been disappointed, because I’ve never given somebody I liked that much power.
-Albert Brooks

Smoke like a chimney, work like a horse, eat without thinking, go for a walk only in really pleasant company.
-Albert Einstein

You practice and you get better. It’s very simple.
-Philip Glass

A big part of life is realizing what you’re good at.
-Alyssa Milano

Children teach you that you can still be humbled by life, that you learn something new all the time. That’s the secret to life, really — never stop learning. It’s the secret to career. I’m still working because I learn something new all the time. It’s the secret to relationships. Never think you’ve got it all.
– Clint Eastwood

A friend is someone who will tell you when you’re bullshitting, when you’ve overstepped a mark, or when you’re being an idiot.
-Sting

The measure of achievement is not winning awards. It’s doing something that you appreciate, something you believe is worthwhile. I think of my strawberry souffle. I did that at least twenty-eight times before I finally conquered it.
-Julia Child

In the end, winning is sleeping better.
-Jodie Foster

Full archive:

http://www.esquire.com/features/what-ive-learned/what-ive-learned-archive

Maak er een mooie dag

Maak er een mooie dag is something that Dutch and Flemish people say, usually for someone’s birthday. It means make it a beautiful day. This is an interesting phrase that we don’t have in English, yes we say have a good day, but this means something a little different. It means make the day more beautiful – inspiring, something of sheer pleasure. I liked this phrase as soon as I heard it and try to apply it to my everyday life, not just on my birthday.

Here are five things that make my days better:

1) Wes Anderson –  THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL trailer

2) LCD Soundsystem – Dance Yourself Clean

3) Daydreaming about Pink Lake in Western Australia

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4) www.radarmagazine.se  Just look around. So cool.

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5) Thought Catalog Articles

http://thoughtcatalog.com/evelyn-cheung/2012/11/6-lessons-you-learn-from-traveling/

Remembrance Day at The Transcona Legion

The sound of laughs, coffee being poured, and boots stamping out snow could be heard at The Transcona Legion on Sunday.  Their annual Remembrance Day ceremony brought both Legion members and people of the community down to commemorate.

The event room had a capacity of 180, but roughly 75 people attended the event.

“We always hold the same service, but this year we were unlucky with the weather. It’s not as full as it usually is,” said the President of the Legion, Cam Wortman.

The Legion members all wore uniforms and had a sense of camaraderie between them, sitting together and talking like old friends.

Wortman explained that he, along with the other members in attendance, were not veterans, but their fathers were.  Due to the weather, the veterans who are substantially older, chose to only attend the march that was later in the day.

The walls of the room were covered in plaques of past members, and there was a tiny bar decorated with christmas lights that sold caesars and beer.  At the front of the room was a framed picture of the Queen, a Canadian and British flag, and a wooden cross. Wortman started the ceremony by having everyone sing Oh Canada. The buzz of old and young voices stirred up a heartfelt tribute. This was followed by a prayer, read by Celeste West, the 1st Vice President of the Legion.

West then read out the names of Legion members who died during the past year, and Wortman placed a poppy on the cross for every name.  After this he read a letter from Stephen Harper, and followed that with a moment of silence.  Celeste then initiated God Save The Queen, which only the older people in the room sang along to.

“Thanks for coming out, the bar is now open,” said Wortman. A few laughs emerged from the crowd, and with that, the 15 minute ceremony was finished.

Kids began to examine the cross, people mingled light heartedly, and the games room was open with tea and free raisin bread.

Remembrance Day is a day of commemoration, but doesn’t have to be a sombre affair.

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