Oops, I did it again. My love-hate relationship with Costco…

man-909049_1280 (1)There I am on Saturday AGAIN. Every time I go, I swear “this is the last time!” More importantly, every time I go there is someone cursing the exact same thing.  Costco is one of those places I abhor, and yet, as if it had a magnetic field around it (and I’m somehow wearing a metallic suit), I keep going back.

Why? I much rather imagine myself as a “farmer’s market” kind of girl–thoughtfully perusing quaint little baskets of slightly imperfect, but 100% local, organic produce from a Mennonite farmer with an overgrown beard straw hat and horse and buggy parked out back… Continue reading

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Deadbeatmom Resolutions

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Photo courtesy of Pixabay

Another year passed, another opportunity to try and erase or at least contain the damage. Hysterically, I started drafting this blog at the end of 2008…so much for the resolution to become an Uber blogger! But hey, this is officially my 50th post–woot!! Anyway, here are my top 5 Resolutions (whose got time or energy for 10)? Continue reading

Jesus Wouldn’t Approve

I admit it. I’m a political junkie. Which is probably why I’m obsessed with the Syrian refugee crisis.

Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us.

Maybe it’s because I’m a bleeding heart, maybe it’s because my parents were practically refugees who came to Canada after a brutal civil war in Greece (a war, I might add, where my grandfather was accused of being a “communist” and shot into a ditch with half his village. My mom was 7 at the time, the same age as my middle son). Okay, so kind of heavy for a “deadbeat mom” I know, but the load of crap I’ve seen on Facebook since the Paris bombings has made my blood boil.

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Prison from the eyes of a 3-year-old

chair prison

So clearly the youngest gets the acting gene from me! He put on this face as I took pics of him though the chair. Despite my deadbeatmom name, this guy is remarkably well-adjusted and happy. In fact, at the moment, he’s the most rational of the bunch. Guess he’s just making the face to try to live up to the persona I’ve created for myself!

Why the Conservative Party needs to go back to primary school…

TDSB TRAITSI don’t normally write about politics, but given the stunning overthrow of the Conservative Party in Canada two days ago, I thought this might be a good day to offer up some advice to my truly “blue” friends today.

Why did they lose?

Well I’m no political pundit, but I say it came down to something my boys are learning all about in grade school: character. In fact, character is officially part of the curriculum of the Toronto District School Board (TDSB).

“Character development at the TDSB is about helping students learn and practice positive character attributes. When we build good character, we build strong communities.” –TDSB website

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The deadbeat is back!

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Please be a girl or a fussy, neat gay boy!

Yup. Preggars for a third time!  Just when I thought I’d seen the last of dirty diapers, sleepless nights and a line-backer like body I up and got knocked up!

 
Trying to pitch “40 and Pregnant” to MTV about the struggles of a 40-year-old pregnant woman who must live with the burden of pregnancy all WITHOUT the use of Botox or Retin-A.
 
Stay tuned!  If I can get over my “elderly mom” fatigue, I’ll write more soon!

Why clean the house when you can watch home improvement shows??

It’s been a while since I’ve posted. And for good reason:  we went from not even having cable to getting satellite. Which means hours previously spent surfing the web and writing once Noa’s asleep, have now been replaced with every home improvement show imaginable.

 While You Were Out, Trading Spaces, Flip That House, Moving Up…the list goes on. What I’ve realized is that these shows kind of make me feel the way most women do after flipping through Glamour or People magazine: fat, unkempt and just, well, not put together.

Is my house fat?? I wish. But the stuff crammed in our little 1300 square foot semi makes sometimes leaves me feeling like someone who’s 200 pounds trying to squeeze into a size 2. We started out as minimalists, but then we went and had a baby. It was like suddenly POOF out of nowhere an eighteen wheeler packed with JUNK fell out of the sky and randomly landed in our house.

I know these shows are supposed to offer inspiration–I mean with a $1000, a can of paint, some cardboard tubing and a glue gun it seems like just about anyone can convert their den into an urban oasis.  But when I watch them, I just feel kind of depressed. ‘Cause the reality is, no matter how much clutter I clear or how funky an idea I have the only way it would get done in the first place (and stay looking perfect) is to ship Noa (now 16 months old) off to toddler boot camp or a nursery school that takes baby boarders.

 The only light, within this pit of home improvement self-hatred I find myself trapped in, is How Clean is Your House? For those of you who haven’t seen it, it’s about human sloth. More specifically, people who typically live in a fantastical blend of bacteria and shit. So much so, in fact, that the hosts are always marvelling at how the home owners have managed not to succumb to some deadly bacterial infection.

Now those people make me feel good!

Dumb Ass Kid Names

If Warhol was f#$ked up, what’s to be of little Matisse and Monet?

So I’m in the library today with baby Noa, sifting through the mass of board books when I hear this woman (and I kid you not, this actually happened) say to her 2-year-old, “Monet, we have to go find Matisse and then go home.”

I thought I didn’t hear her right. I mean would someone actually torture their kids in this way?  But then, clear as a bell, I heard her address her young children as Monet and Matisse. I wondered aloud to my sister-in-law what they would name a son–Pablo? Da Vinci?  Personally, I’m going with Warhol- which I think would be a stellar first name any child would love to have (and would surely never get teased about).  Is it any wonder that kids today are getting high on air from aerosole cans and cutting when there are people in this world bestowing names on their unsuspecting offspring like Monet and Matisse?

Truly some parents should be put away for their stupidity. How are these kids ever going to be anything but freaky goth kids strung out on crystal meth?  I’m willing to bet several cans of Campbell’s soup on it.

10 Ways Springer is Better than Dr. Phil

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Okay, so I must admit. I actually used to kinda like Dr. Phil. But that slowly started to chip away when he a) brought anti-Iraq war activists on (at the start of the war) and told them they were unpatriotic and b) apparently threatened to walk away from a sold out live presentation because (or so the story goes), he was not provided with a hair dryer (how ironic is this) as stipulated in his contract. The straw that broke the camel’s back was the “I slept with your sister” episode. Anyway, Jerry Springer is starting to look a whole lot better these days for a bunch of reasons…

  1. Dr. Phil berates his trashy guests for their horrible deeds–e.g. sleeping with their wife’s sister or stuffing a 200 pound baby with Ho Hos…Springer celebrates the shortcomings of his guests, giving a bleeped out voice to the socially and economically disenfranchised inbred citizens of the world. 
  2. Dr. Phil brazenly hounds Britney Spears to publicly humiliate her into sanity…Springer offers anonymous and infamous trailer trash everywhere the opportunity to publicly demonstrate their insanity.  
  3. Any chance he gets, Dr. Phil is shamelessly promoting a crap book by his obnoxious son or annoyingly helium-filled wife who are both authorities on nothing…while…Springer’s only request of his charming, hearing-impaired daughter is that they waltz together on “Dancing with the Stars.” 
  4.  Dr. Phil is a media slut in a psychiatrist’s clothes…Springer is a circus-freak shrink, disguised as a self-proclaimed media whore. 
  5.  Dr. Phil thinks he’s God…Springer recognizes that even God has a sense of humour. 
  6. Dr. Phil often hosts ridiculous shows about makeovers and helping people ‘transform’ their look…Jerry accepts his lovely guests just the way they are. 
  7. Dr. Phil’s annoying son Jay has been known to put on a ‘fat suit’ to show how America’s obese underbelly is treated…Springer guests often expose just how big that underbelly (amongst other private parts) really is. 
  8.  Dr. Phil loves the sound of his own voice…Jerry loves the sound of continuous bleeping when his guests get riled up…. 
  9. Dr. Phil is notorious for sucking up to George and Laura Bush on his broadcasts…Rather than sucking up to politicians, Jerry is one: he was named Ohio Democrat of the year in 2004 and has been mayor of Cincinnati not once, but twice! 
  10. The Dr. Phil show just plain sucks…So does the Jerry Springer show, but Jerry celebrates it! 

If breastfeeding is obscene…Ten things to ban now!

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Heard about the whole facebook and breastfeeding kafuffle http://www.thestar.com/article/255628and and have got to say–bravo to the uptight right! You’ve now made eating a sin! In the spirit of this wise and well-thought-out decision, I believe pictures of the following should also be banned:

1) All 50-something, overweight hairy European men wearing Speedo racers–I mean seriously, doesn’t this make every woman want to slather themselves in anti-bacterial gel?

2) Shots of Toronto’s CN Tower–it is after all, the world’s largest phallic symbol.

3) A woman sipping a $5 coffee from that famous American chain–otherwise known as the “mother’s milk” of a generation.

4) Ultimate fighting on YouTube: I know my husband’s addicted and the homo-eroticism of all those sweaty men rolling around is simply blasphemous.

5) Donuts coated in icing sugar–as children exposed to this kind of lurid food may, later in life develop a cocaine addiction.

6) Milk in general: I mean really, doesn’t it just take you back to that obscene breast of mama?

7) Hot, cheap designer shoes on eBay–which may cause women to orgasmically cry out, “oh yeah baby!”

8) Super baggy rap star pants belted low to reveal boxers–okay, I really believe these should be banned. Why? The part I find offensive is that this rapper “trend” has lasted at least 15 years. Boys, it’s time to move on to another ridiculous look please. Perhaps, walking around with one shoe or pairing these pants with a Speedo…

9) All retractable, domed stadiums–naturally, this conjures up images of the cervix dilating during that horrible, pornographic process known as childbirth.

10) Any photos or info regarding Britney Spears (okay, she’s one mama I actually hope is NOT still breastfeeding. Think of what that milk must contain…) 

Bizarre Search Terms

“Boobs jiggling while walking.” That’s the most recent search term someone used to find my blog. Which leads me to wonder–what the hell are people writing about and what kind of eccentric, fetish-freaks are reading it?

 Of course there could be a logical explanation–perhaps the only thing the searcher could remember about a friend’s blog was that there was a hysterical story about a delusional studmuffin (i.e. a stud in his own mind). Maybe said delusional man went to the same  nightclub every week and always made a point of wearing  tight white shirts to  emphasize his highly developed pecs. Of course since Rico Suave was obviously on steroids which added to his visions of grandeur, he was completely unaware that his “boobs were jiggling while he walked.”

 This is a perfectly logical explanation for the search term. More likely than not though, there’s some 45 year old guy holed up in his mom’s basement who has a penchant for braless, marshmallow-soft breasts that flap in the breeze. Come to think of it, my 60-year old next door neighbour is single, fits the latter description and enjoys strolling around the neighbourhood in a strapless and sadly unsupported bikini top. To the person who inputted this search: send me a message. I’ll hook you up!

The Consequences of New Mommydom and Bar-Hopping

  1. Having to explain that you didn’t spill a drink on your nipples.
  2. Being trashed on three drinks.
  3. Pumping in one of those scuzy bar bathrooms while listening to two tarted up chicks argue over who’s more wasted.
  4. Having to explain to the 22-year-old college kid why you can’t hit the all-night pizza-joint then make out.
  5. Staring at the guy at the bar while internally thinking “my son is going to be way cuter than that!”
  6. Realizing your muffin-top jiggles while you dance.

  7. Answering the “what do you do?” chat up line with “I wipe up poop, pee, spittle and do an occaisional load of laundry.”
  8. Being completely trashed on three drinks.
  9. Trying to entertain a baby at 6am when you’re still  buzzed from aforementioned three drinks.
  10. Having to explain to the next table that, no it’s not their “beer goggles,” your breasts really did double in size over the course of the evening.

10 Signs You’re a True Deadbeat Mom

The Deadbeat Mom UniformThe Deadbeat Mom Uniform

  1. Your baby’s first foods are Twinkies and soda pop.
  2. Your boob alcohol level is beyond 0.5 % (hey man, beer helps you make more milk!).
  3. You believe that the idea of second hand smoke being harmful is just a conspiracy theory made up by those damn anti-smoking Nazis.
  4. You put your 6-month-old daughter in a “My mom’s a M.I.L.F.” onesie.
  5. You’ve appeared on Maury with your 150 lb baby.
  6. The baby refers to the cow on the Baby Einstein video as “Mama.”
  7. You own a copy of “Gangsta Rap Lullabies.”
  8. There are cigarette burns on your Baby Bjorn.
  9. You think ketchup is actually a baby food condiment.
  10. You often try to settle arguments by flashing your boobs, especially when appearing as a guest on Jerry Springer.

How to save a life?

Every once in a while, we all have one of those experiences that shakes things up. Rocks your core and leaves you thinking–how am I really making a difference?

I’m a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister and a friend, so I suppose it’s a given that I have an effect on those people on a daily basis. As a “career” I do write–brochures, web copy and the odd light and fluffy health piece. People might occaisionally read these, so perhaps I’ve provided them with a Cheerio of information they’ll actually digest.

And yet, aside from giving birth to my son, I’d say my biggest contribution to the world in the last year has been a bagel and an iced tea.

Let me explain…

On Tuesday, I decided to spend the day with Noa–now almost eight months old–and run a few errands. After a trip to the local Farmer’s Market, I headed to my neighbourhood Shopper’s Drug Mart to finally get my gazillion pictures of Noa developed for the relatives who’ve been nagging me for snapshots.  It’s a hot, muggy day but Noa’s been adequately hatted, UV netted and slathered in sunscreen.

As we approach the store I spot two kids, a boy and a girl,  sitting next to the newspaper boxes without an inch of shade in sight. They’re maybe 15 or 16. In front of them sits a plastic tub with about $1.37 in it. As I pass, they don’t ask me for money or say anything for that matter. They just sit quietly looking at the ground as the world literally passes them by. 

Now I must admit, as I’ve gotten older, my views on street people have hardened. I’ve found myself being a little less sympathetic, a little colder and a little more detached than I was in my early twenties when my brother nicknamed me “pinko girl.” Maybe it’s a survival tactic, or perhaps it’s due to that spate of tabloid-trash news reporting which revealed some Toronto pan-handlers actually have good homes in the suburbs to go back to (i.e. the notorious “shakey lady”) every night.  

But when I look at these kids melting in the midday sun, something stirs in me. I resolve to pick them up a drink in the store when I’m finished with the pictures.

I go into Shopper’s and go about my business with the intention of picking up the drinks. I even go to the refridgerated section and pick out two bottles of pop. Then I realize carrying them while pushing a stroller is going to be tricky. I put them down and plan on getting them after I’ve got my photos and am ready to leave.

Long story short, I get the photos just as Noa starts fussing. He’s tired and cranky and wants out of the store pronto. Trying to avoid a screaming baby scene I leave without the drinks. “Oh well,” I think to myself. After all I thought about doing a random act of kindness. It’s more than most people. And besides that I’ve got a baby who needs to get home for his nap fast. They’re probably gone anyways.

 On the last point, I’m half right. The boy is gone. But the girl is still sitting there in the blazing sun. I look down at her. She’s wearing a pair of ratty velveteen track pants and a mismatched flannel lumber jacket. FLANNEL. It’s well over 30 degrees Celsius outside.

Christ, how can I ignore this girl?

“Excuse me, would you like something to drink?” I ask.

At first, she seems uncertain who I’m talking to. When she realizes I am, in fact, asking her she weakly says,”Yes, please.”

“What would you like?”

“Anything, please.”

“How about an iced tea.”

“Yes, thank you very much.”

I study her more carefully. She’s tall and lanky. She’s got slight buckteeth. Something about her–maybe her incredibly good manners and gratitude–suggest to me that she’s not from the city.

I walk with Noa in tow in the stroller to the Tim Horton’s takeout window at the side of the drugstore and order an iced tea and a bagel with cream cheese.

She could be a runaway. Most likely abused–physically, emotionally, sexually, take your pick. Maybe she’s been abandoned and then put in the Children’s Aid system where she was abused again.

I want to ask her why she’s there, begging on the street in the hot midday sun in a flannel jacket and who the boy she was with was. Her brother maybe? I want to tell her she’s got options. That she doesn’t have to end up a crack addict (she was definately not high or drunk) or a prostitute, or pregnant at 16. That there are programs that can help and people in this world you can trust. Who won’t treat her like shit. I want to ask her where the fuck her parents are and what horrible things they’ve done to her to make her think that living on the streets is safer or better than living with them. I want to take her home and give her that drawer full of clothes I know I’ll never wear again because they’re too small or I’m too old or because I had the luxury of buying something that I didn’t really need ‘just because.’ Summer clothes to replace the flannel. Clothes that might even make her feel better about herself. Make her feel less invisible to the world. I want to give her a job. Maybe do some garden work. Or I can teach her how to do filing for my business, or research on the Internet.  I could give her a job so she won’t have to be on the street in 30 degree weather in a flannel jacket begging for spare change. I want to tell her  I can help.

Instead I pass her the bagel and the iced tea.

“Thank you so much,” she says.

“You’re welcome,” I reply.

“Have a nice day,” she says as she, like a starving squirrel thrown a nut, frantically unwraps the bagel.

“You too,” I instinctively say.

And as I push my beautiful, loved and wanted son down the street in his stroller, the irony of my response brings tears to my eyes.