30 June 2007

Fretful Frenchie Frustration

After being accepted to school in Paris in May, I was told I would be receiving a information package in the mail in June with all the necessary info about the school and moving to France. So I waited and I waited and I waited (because it's only uprooting my whole life and moving to a different continent, so I'm sure the less time I have, the easier it will be to: find an apartment, buy a plane ticket, arrange my student visa, move my stuff, get insurance, etc.).

Why did I keep waiting so long, you might ask? Why not just send them an email or call the school? Great idea — only they don't answer emails and they only take calls between ten and twelve, Monday, Wednesday and Friday (which is three to five a.m. Toronto time). This Wednesday I decided that I had waited patiently long enough and it was time to suck it up and set my alarm for the evil hours of the morning. Three A.M. shrieks from my alarm clock and I grumble out of bed to call the school. And it rings. And it rings. And it rings and rings and rings and no one answers! I set my alarm for 20 minutes later, half-slept and tried to call again – and again there was no answer! Alarm after alarm, more tossing and turning, and more not-answering-of-the-telephone. So frustrating!

And again this morning; alarms, grumbling, ringing & not-answering! AAAaargh! How does anything ever get done in France!? I should be looking at this experience a kind of birth by fire since I'm going to have to get used to these kind of lovely peculiarities of French living – but still, I need to get this package like, yesterday! I'm giving the school one more chance on Monday before calling in the big guns at the Canadian Embassy in Paris and the French Consulate in Toronto to see if they can help me at all.

Let's all keep our doits croisés for me.

Happy Canada Day!

27 June 2007

Yeay Gay!

For all you loyal WTTMB readers who are not (yet) on Facebook, you can still see my photo album from this year’s crazy-fun Pride weekend. Just click here.

(I couldn’t be arsed to upload photos both here and there; Blogspot’s photo features are too cumbersome to do a whole album).

Certainly one of –if not the– best Pride ever! Who knew it was so easy to consume so much alcohol? Yeay Gay!

23 June 2007


After a few weeks of summertime fun in the sun, I realised that I've become ridiculously tanned. I mean, look at that photo – I think I'm turning Mexican (in lieu of turning Japanese). I have never ever been that tanned in my life! It's rather disconcerting to look in the mirror and see this brown stranger looking back at me. But skin cancer is the new anorexia –it's on all the runways in Milan this year– so it's all good.

19 June 2007

Just in time for Pride

Let's have a look at how our Geisha Sistaz are making Nihon a better place, one ramen shop at a time:

Well, that seems perfectly normal, don't you think?

14 June 2007

The Curiosity of Chance

I saw this movie as a kind of last minute thing using vouchers I got from volunteering at Inside Out. Funny and smart and definitely the best movies of the festival, I really hope this gets picked up for distribution because it has so much potential.

Taking its cue from The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles and all the other John Hughes 80s teen movies that people love, it has all teased hair and music that made the 80s great, plus drag queens, hot shirtless neighbours, a super-cute lead and sassy Eurotrash accents (the movie is set at an American school in Belgium). What more could you want?

While this film is funny and light-hearted, it's also a headlong look at the unpleasant reality of being gay in high school. Unlike most gay teen movies which deal with coming out, the title character in this movie, Chance, is already out. Way out. With his sexuality already a fait accompli, the movie looks at the bullying, addled parents, jocks and self-doubt that all teen gays spend their formative years dealing with.

Change Belgium for Belleville and Wham! for Nirvana and what you have is a film about an eccentric gay outsider struggling with being gay in high school — i.e. a film about me! It was as though the writer had followed me around Grade 11 and translated my life into a script — The film could have just as easily been called The Curiosity of Tokyo Tintin for how much I felt like I was watching my life. There is even an exact duplicate of a conversation I had with one of my friends. (A: “I don’t know why you put up with the jocks.” Me: “I rise above it and be the better person.”). While the protagonist goes on to face his fears and his bullies in an explosion of glitter and fabulousness, I wish the outcome of my conversation had been more fruitful. I just shirked away from the bullying and built up a wall of defenses (and rather lacked in glitter department I'm afraid). I guess I learned something from it all, but perhaps there was a better lesson I could have taken away from the situation.

I found Curiosity of Chance really empowering and wish I’d had the opportunity to see it when I was young and impressionable. I might have found the confidence to stand up to the myriad of jerks and rednecks who populated my school and achieved my full fablutronic potential at a much younger age. For the sake of all the gay youths out there I hope this film gets picked up for distribution and adopted into the gay cannon post haste (right up there with Rocky Horror and Jem). We'd probably have more happy confident homos with positive outlooks and square heads on their shoulders (and even, perhaps, less dependence on transvestite aliens or hologramme machines — I personally am lost when my Synergy earrings stop working).

Kudos to Russell P. Marleau for writing and directing such an insightful and funny movie (about me). I can't wait to see it in the cinema again!

You can watch the trailer here.

08 June 2007

Daniel Craig wants a gay Bond

"Daniel Craig has revealed that he is pressurising producers to include a gay scene in the next James Bond film.

"He says he wants to keep Bond 'unpredictable'...the secret agent..notorious for chasing women....and he wants him to go gay?...

"A film insider said: "Bond will always be a hit with the ladies. But Daniel has a massive gay fan base and that can't be ignored."

(Full story here, and here).

The Moor's Last Sigh

This book was a re-read, so it's not quite the fairest review, but still an amazing book. Five pepperpots out of five for this Rushdie classic. (His best maybe?). Moraes Zogoiby spills his family secrets in fast forward reverse fashion from the Jewish expulsions of Spain and the steamy spicehills of Cochin to the glittering glass of the Bombay highlife.

I've heard through the rumour mill that a film is being made from this book, which has super-high, visually stunning potential. It would be a movie I would love to watch – but it would also be a movie that was about five-hours long. I'm not sure how this could be cut or edited to fit the silver screen, but if they can find a way to make it work, I'd be the first in line to buy my ticket.

01 June 2007

North York – North Yuck!

Alternate Title: Suburbs; the Worst of Both Worlds

Almost one year into working in the blanched concrete monotony that is North York, I can truly say that suburbs are my own personal vision of hell. Depressing Stalinist apartment blocks huddled together against the vast anonymous spaces of wasteland. Strip malls and car lanes. Hulking fortresses of big box stores defended by moats of endless parking lots. Isolated people buffered from real human contact by six lanes of traffic and cracked, decaying sidewalks.

I can’t think of a single positive thing to say about suburbs; sprawl destroys farmland and greenspace, makes public transit impossible and forces an even greater dependence on the almighty Mammon of the car. Really, people who live in suburbs are eco-terrorists with their huge carbon footprint, greenhouse-gas cars and pesticide lawns. If were up to me, we’d blow them all up and start all over. (Or conversely, we could build a wall around the suburbs, blow them all up, and then start a specialty channel where we watch the survivors build a new society out of the rubble of Pickering or Thornhill).

In honour of MMC and my Battleship Adventure* to the furthest reaches of North York, the Fairview Mall and to the very end of the pointless Sheppard line, I present to you my North Yuck Photo Essay.