Thursday, September 29, 2011

Give Me Spots On My Apples, But Leave Me The Birds & The Bees

While the majority of my blog posts are based around rants, beer and nonsensical ramblings, there are some things that I write about because I want to create more awareness; inform readers about issues that I consider to be of some importance or relevance. This is one of them.

If you live in Ontario, there's a good chance you've heard about the Mega Quarry proposed by The Highland Companies. You've probably also seen signs on your neighbours' lawns, like these ones:

But there's also a good chance that you're not completely sure what everyone is protesting against. What's the big deal? Well, lemme 'splain it to you - or, should I say, have the NDACT explain it to you (since they'll surely say something better than "dude, this mega quarry is bad news bears 'n stuff!" A vast improvement on my own verbiage, no doubt).

From their website:

This is an application for what would be the largest ever quarry in Canada and the second largest in North America.The proposed quarry site is situated on prime agricultural land, to be excavated invasively 200 feet below the water table in the midst of the headwaters for a number of significant river systems that serve a large portion of Ontario’s population.

Due to the sheer magnitutude of the proposed excavation, and the fact that it lays in a highly sensitive water recharge area, any miscalculation, oversight or other error could result in an environmental catastrophe of enormous proportions.

Like I said - bad news bears.

So, what can we do about it? There are a few things.

Join the Facebook page. Sign one of the many petitions. Get a sign for your lawn.

And, if you're local (or up for a road trip), grab a ticket to Foodstock - some of Canada's top chefs will be cooking at this pay-what-you-can event as a fundraiser in support of the movement.

The more we fight against it, the better the chances that it won't happen.

For more info, you can read all about it at

(See mom? Not even a mention of beer in this post! Except that one. and the one before. Ah, nevermind...)

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Droning Engine Throbs In Time With Your Beating Heart

I stopped by The Rhino for a bit on Friday to check out The Indie Alehouse's beer previews for Toronto Beer Week. While there, and then other bars on our Friday night hop, I encountered random people at different levels of drunkness (as is the norm), and it got me thinking - what does everyone do to prevent their hangovers?

Sounds stupid, but think about it. Most people have certain hangover cures, or weird little rituals to prevent the craptastic feeling that rears its ugly alcoholic head the next day. Right?

Don't forget the coffee.

For me, I always used to make sure I ate something after the bar, drank a lot of water, popped an ibuprofen and got some sleep. Boom. Done.

But over the years as my migraines have increased and stomach issues have worsened, my old tricks don't do trick. Now I have the Pepto Bismol on hand, the Gatorade, the cold head-wrap thing, and the vitamins. Even all that doesn't always work (I also have my anxiety meds to blame. Oh - and the alcohol. Right. That.)

So, I'm looking for more ideas. What do you do to prevent (or get rid of) jerkass hangovers?

 *This post was brought to you by my Irish/German background and Labatt 50.

Friday, September 23, 2011

You Gave Away The Things You Loved, And One Of Them Was Me

Going through random songs on my computer yesterday, I came across this little gem... Faster Pussycat's cover of 'You're So Vain' by Carly Simon.  My sister will remember it well; when we were (a lot) younger, we listened to it often. I even remembered all the details of the video.

But I probably haven't heard it in 15-18 years - and listening to it now?

Painful. Borderline brutal.

Oh, Carly. This must've tortured you.

(My apologies to Faster Pussycat - I swear, I still love House of Pain. And I might still be hot for the guitarist. Shut up.)

This got me thinking... what are the worst cover songs ever done? So I asked a few people, and threw it on Twitter so I could get opinions of the masses.

The winners (or, should I say, les losers?):

Sheryl Crow covering GNR's 'Sweet Child o' Mine'.

Why was this allowed??

Limp Bizkit covering The Who's 'Behind Blue Eyes'.

Sorry, Fred. Nothing gives you the right to cover this song.

And maybe this is slightly blasphemous since it's the album anniversary and all, but...

Miley Cyrus covering Nirvana's 'Smells Like Teen Spirit'.

Dare I say that she chose the most obvious song? Quite the fan she is.

As you can see, I had to put my 'thinking pen' behind my ear in order to whittle down your lists to just a mere few shitty covers. And to be honest, I am a fan of many covers. such as:

Deftones covering Sade's 'No Ordinary Love'
Jeff Buckley and K.D. Lang's versions of Leonard Cohen's 'Hallelujah'
Tom Waits and Cat Powers' versions of Phil Phillips' 'Sea of Love'
And the list goes on...

Agree or disagree, I don't much care.

But what are your favourite covers, and which ones make you wanna shove rusty forks in your ears?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Promise Carved In Stone, Deeper Than The Sea

Another weekend. Another great wedding. Another dress.

Just kidding, I wore the same damn one as last week.

Apparently my wardrobe is not season-appropriate. So instead of judging me, maybe you should volunteer to be my personal shopper.

Aside from my actual wedding date, I managed to snag two other dates for the evening. When your real date is in the wedding party, these extra dates come in handy.

Take note.

That is the smile of a married man, folks.

And this is the face of a perpetually single chick.

Most men will recognize this pose. It tends to mean that the word "no" is somewhere in there.

Or, depending on alcohol consumption, I may say "nein", "non", or "nyet". I'm cultural like that, si?

Two of us are very happy for Mark & Stella. One of us is surprised.

Now, in order to truly enjoy a wedding reception you have to lose yourself in the moment. Go where the feeling takes ya.

Vogue if you've gotta vogue.

Fight if ya gotta fight.

And if Rickety Cricket's Gimp Cane just happens to be available at yet another wedding?

Well, it's sure to make the rounds as a dancing accessory.

Stella, the gorgeous bride, makes it look classy.

I make it look ugly.

And Mark? Mark makes it a showcase.

I'll drink to that.

Good times. Cheers to the awesome couple.

In completely non-related news, we're in the middle of Toronto Beer Week. And if you haven't been to any of the hop-tastic events yet, I have two suggestions. My friends over at Indie Alehouse will be previewing some of their craft beers at The Burger Bar on Wednesday, and then at The Rhino (this blog should have royalties from all the Rhino mentions...) on Friday night.

So, if you like beer you should probably go. Because the Indie Alehouse isn't open yet and people are chomping at the bit to try their beers. Here's your chance, hosers.

Happy beer week!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Catch Me Flying In The Sun, Catch Me Drinking Of Your Wine

By now, everyone knows that the honey badger don't give a shit.

And if you didn't know? Learn:

Well the other day I was showing The Gimp where that came from, since he never understood why I keep talking about a damn honey badger who apparently gives nary a shit. That viewing led to us watching all the animal videos, narrated by whoever this Randall guy is.

Videos like... the bullfrog:

And these goats, who I want as pets. Hours of entertainment, methinks:

So there. No rambles today, just some videos that teach you crap you may not have ever known about animals, and the newfound knowledge that these entertain me.

Cuz the Shambled Badger don't give a shit.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Could've Been The Willie Nelson, Could've Been The Wine

This past weekend, I ventured up to Bobcaygeon for Shaun & Patrick's nuptials.

See? Up north-y.

You should probably be warned... there may be a crapload of photos. And when this post is done? There may be a crapload more, as I'm liable to steal 'em from my fellow wedding attendees.


Our original weekend cottage plans fell through, we so scrambled to get a car rented and find a dogsitter (Thanks Leah & Mitch!), then we drove up to look for a place to stay the night.

Managed to snag a cute little cottage right on the lake, about 3 minutes from the wedding.

Not too shabby for a last-minute rental.

The wedding location was amazing. Absolutely gorgeous.

A black & white themed affair, so everyone matched.

Except the beer. Damn rebellious beer.



I need to become rich so I can buy a lakefront cottage and escape the city as I please.

Now accepting donations to the Kris Needs A Kickass Cottage Fund.

Two ladies I've missed dearly, Donna and Sabrina.

Ah, the Proud FM days.

The groom & groom. Speech time.

Little impatient, Patrick? Hell, you've only been married for half an hour!

First dance. Cue pulling of the heartstrings and females whispering "why can't I find a man to look at me like that?"

Beautiful sunset, beautiful setting. Beautiful everything.

Almost looks like Shaun & I are standing in front of a fake background.

Can I go back there now, please?

Oh, the dancing.

I found The Gimp's new cane to be a perfect dancing accessory. I somehow managed not to poke anyone's eye out, or maim them beyond recognition. Success!

Fireworks at a wedding. Shaun & Patrick do it up correctly, friends.

So... They had 'Fireworks' in 'Bobcaygeon'. I may have been the only one at the wedding who believed it was a Tragically Hip-themed event.

Leave it to the straight girl.

Good times all around.

Congrats to the lovely couple - I wish you both a lifetime of happiness and killer wardrobes.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

All Your Life, You've Never Seen A Woman Taken By The Wind

Yesterday was complete and utter hell.

I've mentioned before that my doctor had put me on medication to help me deal with my anxiety disorder. I've been on them since May and, with a few side effects I could manage, they seemed to help me feel more balanced. Less anxiety; more reasons to get outta bed in the morning.

When I started the pills, my doctor was sure to tell me, "Don't ever suddenly stop taking them."

Well, I didn't plan to.

A few weeks back, I called my doctor's office to make an appointment to renew my prescription. She told me that I didn't need an appointment, I just had to get my pharmacist to fax the doctor and get it renewed.

Shazam. Simple. So I did.

But when I later called my pharmacist to make sure I could come get my pills, they said my doctor hadn't responded. Strange.

Then came the long weekend. No doctor around. Still no answer, and therefore no prescription.

I had run out of pills. Completely.

It started with dizzy spells. They became more frequent but I figured if that was the only withdrawal symptom I had, I would be ok.

Next came the headaches. I've been prone to headaches and migraines all my life, so I naively assumed it would be gone by morning. I was wrong.

The next day, my headache had worsened. So had the dizziness. Added to it were non-stop puking, chills, sweats, and a feeling that my brain was disconnected from the rest of my body. I had a difficult time speaking, and my thoughts were completely out of control. I hurt, badly.

Luckily my friend was there to help me out, and he got down to the problem between my pharmacy and my doctor. It was a fax machine issue - thanks, technology. You messed me up, largely.

The pharmacist knew the severity of Cymbalta withdrawal, and helped me out. Thankfully, I was able to feel a lot better by last night. I never want to go through that again.

I don't have the words to fully explain what it felt like, because there aren't any. It's a medication that deals with the brain, and so the brain is badly affected when the medication suddenly stops.

Learn as much as you can about every medication you take. And if you need to get off of it, prepare to slowly wean yourself from it safely. Suicide is a big issue with people who are suddenly without these types of medication. I didn't know that before.

Consider this a long-ass Public Service Announcement, children.

But I promise, my next post will be a happier one. I'll be up north this weekend, attending the long-awaited wedding of Shaun and Patrick. And yes... I'll have my medication, and therefore won't throw up all over the wedding party.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

I've Got My Own Reasons To Drink Now. Think I'll Call My Dad Up & Invite Him.

Although it's technically been well over a decade that I've been one, some thoughts came to me recently and brought home how very true it is.

I am an adult.

I know, I know. I've been an adult ever since I was old enough to vote, buy my own damn cigarettes and go see movies with nudity and four-letter-words ("Ha! That naked guy just said fuck! No bleeping or nuthin'!").

But the early-to-mid-twenties are really just a launchpad into true adulthood. Most of us didn't know shit about what we were doing; we were trying to figure it out by aimlessly wandering through life.

Beer helped. Always.

Then: Tongues, beer & devil horns

Now: ... what, no sneer? No alcohol??! Who AM I?

A few realizations have smacked me upside the head to let me know that 'fun' has taken a backseat to 'responsibility' somewhere along the way.

For example... about 35% of my friends used to have mohawks. Now - maybe 5%. Where'd the mohawks go, guys?

Then there's work... my mind is rarely not on my business, my clients, my upcoming new website, and my endless to-do list. And I like it. Gone are the days when my main thought was "I hope [enter random name here] can make it to the bar tomorrow night. What the hell am I gonna wear?".

Ye Olde Book of Face (or Facebook, for you young folks) only furthers the knowledge that I'm not college-age and hungover all the time. Every day a different ex-classmate is posting about their new marriage, new baby, new divorce, new house... and everyone younger than me types in this new bullshit internet language that I can't decipher whatsoever. Ah, remember words and sentences?

Sex, Drugs and Rock 'n Roll? Nah. It's now Babies, Ibuprophen and Gordon Lightfoot.

But y'know what? I'm cool with it. Bring it on.

Because no matter how much of a grown-up I am, there will always be beer.

That's the beauty of adulthood.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

My Baby's Love Had Gone & Left My Baby Blue

It's no secret that I love the CNE. Used to go every year, but hadn't gone since I last blogged about it in 2009.

So, a couple of days ago I went.


Checked out the farm and got kinda sad. All the little animals make me stupidly giddy and girly, but the confined spaces bother me.

Especially the pigs. Oh, the pigs.

So, no pictures of pigs. But sleeping baby horses? Yeah. Definitely pics of that.

Don't you judge me.

These are the scouts who gave us a wheelchair for my gimp partner in CNE crime.

The scout made my job easier. He was a scout ninja.


My favourite li'l guy, TJ the Water Bottle Bandit. Such a happy little monkey, and playing with a half empty bottle of water was enough to keep him giggly.

Excuse me while my biological clock skips a beat.

Jeff, his daddy,  knows how much I freak out over babies and tried to convince me to "oops" a dude so I can get on the mommy train.

That won't be happening. No babies 'til I find a guy I actually want to stick around.

Yeah, it's proving difficult.

Claire makes cute babies.

Thanks, farmers!

When it was time for rides, The Gimp couldn't go on. So this Shambled Rambler went it alone.

All in all, fun times. I'd go to The Ex every damn day if I could.

And a cute boy gave me a piece of straw as a present...

...thanks, TJ.

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