The Thaw Before The Spring
From January to September, the light lasts a little longer each day.
Friday, April 30, 2004
'Lecture me in full
in a way explicable
when I find out how to get from here to there.'
It's friday, April 30th, the tax deadline of the year of the dragon, 2004.
Adam's telling me he's not going to come to the cottage tonite with
Steve and Joel. I think he has prior engagements with some other of
his friends. I feel kinda bad because I think too many people try to set
him up because they think there is something 'wrong' with him because
he's single. I say let him be single, ya chucknuts. People are sometimes
too unaccepting or expectant of their peers to be the same as they are.
If that is a case, then they will only ever be your 'peer group' as
opposed to being true friends.
A friend is someone like Chucky. Chucky was Ben Affleck's character in
'Good Will Hunting' who would do anything for his best friend Will -
'Will, Chuck would lay down in traffic for you if you asked him to'. He
sought out Will's greatest good most of the time, and the rest of the
time just enjoyed Will's presence and company in his life. When
push came to shove in their friendship, Chuck accepted Will for exactly
who he was - a genius in a land of braindead Boston Southies. Chuck
encouraged Will but also challenged him, when he needed it, to get
out of his comfort zone and take on some new challenges when Chuck
could have easily swayed him to just 'be like the rest of us'.
Adam asked me to not to write about him in my blog but I think he's
probably someone who doesn't get written about alot, which is a shame,
because if he ever did decide to leave his peer group (of mostly government
pub guzzlers) they wouldn't know what hit them. He brings alot of life,
spark, creativity, humour, and energy to wherever he is and needs to
know that he is appreciated, loved and accepted by God, obviously, and
by his real friends and family.
Sometimes, in life, we must make the best of a certain situation. I write
this knowing that in the next few months I wil undergo alot of change in
rapid succession. Im goin out with Steve and Joel tonite and then leaving
for Cobourg in the morning. I hate Cobourg in so many ways but something
that I love inexplicably resides there and makes it all seem worthwhile.
Thursday, April 29, 2004
Holy Mother of Cornbroom.
It has been a day. Yesterday was quite the kick-shicker too.
Where to begin.
Crunching numbers and gaining momentous papercuts as a menial
labourer for revenue canada. I represent a small middleman named
Paul McKechnie, my father. Office life is bizarre. 30 and 40+ people
just walk into a room and start spilling problems and joys on
co-workers, all intermingled into one smelly, verbal dump. The
catharsis of this kind of life style, or any life style for that matter,
is obviously God, but the key is discipline especially in the few minutes you
have arriving home from work during tax season, at midnite or after,
do you spend those minutes to reflect and meditate before you
reach slumber haven mode, or do you fill your brain with jagged
images thinking 'you've earned a little eye-candy'.
Rationalizer: A person who has an excuse for everything, claiming
good reason for every supposed mistake, and logic for every
Life is tough. No doubt. But we must hang on to hope.
This office is hotter than a Kenyan mudhut. I sweat as I type.
Sarah is probably hotter where she is. She's hot all the time though.
Anyways, time to grind some more on the axle of the axis of the
I think of simpler times, in this chaos.
Wednesday, April 28, 2004
I don't seem to fit any mould anymore. Life seems to grow strange
in many aspects, but yet I feel a comfort in the small places of joy.
Like driving back to Ottawa yesterday, just beyond kingston to the
dreadful stretch of 401 between gananoque and brockville. Horrible
turns, nothing to look at and just general boredom. But there in that
stretch that I usually hate, God met me. The sun came out in a brilliant
spectre of light, greening the land and blueing the sky east of me in
vibrance that I...can't really describe. Everything in a usually dumpy place
looked like a piece of heaven. Man. It was great.
Im plugging in Ottawa for my pops, doing some tax returns.
He just called from the next office asking 'What the hell are ya
typin' in there?' so I better go. Love the dad.
Sunday, April 25, 2004
I read Erich's blog a little while back (www.one-to-revolt.blogspot.com) and he seems like a die-hard
thinker and poser of questions. I like Erich's writing. I wish more people could think like him and not
cheer for the Leafs.
I wish that life didn't move as quickly as it did. So much materializes around us as we eat, laugh, shit,
breathe, and make headway in this crazy place we call 'home'. I wish that all past screw-ups with
relationships, friends and family members could be undone but they can't. I wish that I could live
inside an age of innocence, no fear of money, no fear of growing old or getting hurt...but I can't.
Guelph has always been kind of a safe place for me and that's where I am right now. Sarah has
gone south to Phoenix for a week and so with not much work on my plate, I must make do and
make some time to reflect, meditate and re-charge my batteries away from the hole of cobourg.
I miss Sarah...but I think she is probably having fun with her friends near the Grand canyon
somewhere so I must be where I am.
Today in Guelph I arrived, hung out with some old-time friends, and remembered what it feels like
to be myself. I often don't feel like myself in Cobourg, but then again, maybe my conception of myself
is totally fun and good times and happy-joy-joy shit 24/7. Not to say I don't feel like myself in Cobourg
but Sarah being still in her parents house maintains and creates enough 'parent-daughter-future
husband' expectations as it is. I love being with Sarah and I think this past month has been tough
on both of us, mostly because we are impatient and eager to have our own place that we can call
home and come back to and know that no parents, housekeepers or church folk will be waiting at
when we arrive there.
This week is really all about me and so far it is good. I don't really care that much about hockey
anymore - nowhere near as much as I did when I was in highschool. I mostly joined a hockey pool
this year to help create community where I am, in cobourg. So Go Flames Go, Go Canadiens Go and
Go Philly Go. I know, I know, they're american but they're playin the ass-leafs, so gimme a break
damnit - plus I have Zhamnov and Leclair in my pool.
Beyond the church, beyond the lurch,
outside the safety of home
this is where faith grows.
Thursday, April 22, 2004
It seems this time that the outplayed team in an NHL hockey series has won and advanced to the next round of playoff action. Outshooting the Toronto Maple Leafs by almost 12 total shots overall, The Ottawa Senators are now on the golf course, wondering where it all went wrong. The Leafs gained immaculate strength in game seven from two back-to-back almost identical goals from Joe Nieuwendyk in the first period. Blasting down the left side, the dyker's knuckleball wrist shots seemed to baffle Ottawa goalie Patrick Lalime, so much so that he was taken out after the first period of play.
Down three goals to none, the Sens tried to battle back with an early second period blast from Chara, the monster 6'9 defenseman, who rifled a goal past the otherwise invincible Eddie 'the eagle' Belfour. Regaining some confidence, trailing 3 to 1, the Sens gained another chance with a powerplay opportunity soon after Chara's goal in the 2nd. But after that high point goal from Chara, nothing seemed to help the Sens get back on the winning track. In fact, everything they did seemed to hurt them more than help them. Blowing a few more powerplay opportunities, and just not being able to break The Eagle's invisible plane around his crease, the dillapidated Sens weren't able to make any more dents in the Leafs machine.
One thing is certain from this strange and mysterious game 7, and that is that even as Don Cherry himself said 'The Leafs were outplayed in every aspect of tonight's game and if they're not careful, it's gonna be a short series against Philly'. Well put, Don. Leaf fans, for the most part, seem to be unable to recognize their team's weak points and mostly think that every skater on the Leafs squad is as good, if not better, than Wayne Gretzky in his prime, and every goalie on their squad is Patrick Roy about ten or fifteen years ago. This just isn't reality. For Leaf fans, the saying 'this is our year' which surfaces from the lips of cheerers every year the Leafs make the playoffs, has shown to be untruth for about...oh, about 40 years now.
One thing I can say about Leaf fans, though, is that they are faithful and loyal. Two 30 year old factory worker Leaf-fans from Toronto would beat the piss out of a 6 year old school girl if she was wearing a Sens jersey, and that says something I think. I'm...not sure what it says...but it definitely is something. So cheer on Leafers because the truth is your 45+ year old team is gonna need some 'extra support' for the next round when they meet up with a team who is much younger, skates much faster, and scores alot more goals than most teams have so far in the playoffs. Go Leafs GO!
Saturday, April 17, 2004
Wednesday, April 14, 2004
Life accelerates in a parade of feces and smiles.
I read this book by Douglas Coupland called 'Life After God'. In it, we see the voice of a writer who is trapped in a life which is totally undesirable and ultimately unsatisfying. He weaves together a collective unconscious notebook of memories and whims and thoughts. One interesting thing the writer talks about is the mind's capacity to only take so much. He wrote something to the effect of 'The way I see it, the mind is like a glass of water, and every memory or experience within makes the volume of water greater. But I think at around the age of 30 that glass is pretty much full, and that anything after that age just doesn't seem to have the same effect it used to'.
I totally did that quote major injustice, but the point is our memories and experiences are so meaningful, even down the most mundane of activities. I remember for a while, back when I was 24 and drinkin alot of coffee and playing alot of nintendo in my bedroom, I worked a shift for a lumber yard that used to be a major employer for me because they needed some help. So i jumped in, full throttle because at that stage of my life I desired only one thing - money. I didn't really care about girls or what have you, but money was my motivating factor. I wanted to make alot of money so I could take alot of trips and afford to buy alot of crap and take friends out for dinner alot. Money was my honey of the hive.
So I ended up working this shift, as a driver for the lumber yard, and nearly died that day up in Mont tremblant Quebec, after a car came whizzing into my lane, in icy conditions, and I, with a van full of tongue and groove cedar and rough pine, tapped the brakes only to skid forwards on an angle, totally out of control, and into a T-junction snowbank, on to a guard rail, which hung the van up and kept it from sliding down a fairly steep, snowy, tree-riddled cliff.
I was fine, thank God. Just a little shaken up. I told my friends at the lumber yard, the next morning, that I had no interest in working there anymore. At that moment, I realized that there are alot more important things in this life than money. I began to see life with brand new eyes, realizing just as Don Miller writes, that we are truly are on 'thin ice' and that every moment we have on this crazy planet counts. WE MUST MAKE THE MOST OF IT! Dwindling into an existence of complaints and blame just won't do. God didn't design us to live a life like that.
After that day, I have tried to count every moment a blessing from God because you just never know when it's all gonna go. I heard this speaker on the weekend, at a hi-school youth rally, where teenagers sweat alot in a high school gym and things called 'icebreaker games' are supposed to be fun but they're really not. Anyways, this speaker, Phil Cann, said an interesting thing. He said 'I don't want to go to heaven. That's right...you heard me. I don't want to go to HEAVEN!...Because I love life. If life were intended for everyone who comes to know God to just go to heaven, they would. They would pray a prayer and disappear into thin air, spiralling upwards into the skies and gone. But they don't. God has so much for us down here and so often we're missing out'.
I know that maybe some of you who read this think that this capital G God I write about is total shit, or just something I conjured up because I'm lonely, but I swear it is truth with a capital T. And I really do hope that everyone I encounter in life will, even if they don't agree with me, at least know that I wasn't pulling their crank. John 10:10.
Wednesday, April 07, 2004
Howdly doodly raccy-oonies.
The blue brilliant sky of the few days past has turned to a lacklustre
watercolor gray with drizzly notions foreboding. The CV joint boot on
my car squeaks and rickets as I make right turns. I think perhaps that
at any given moment, it will loose itself and grind listlessly in the air,
breaking clean off the axle, and dying in a ditch somewhere along the 401,
leaving me only to smile and then crash like a bastard as my whole wheel breaks off too.
crash like a bastard eh? boy, you have quite the way with words.
You know, you read the psalms and they're really all about praising God, both in this life and the next. Psalms are a book of the bible written by David, a man with a solid heart and spirit of victory, but who wrote the entire book from a cave somewhere while in hiding. His every word and line depicts struggle intermingled with praise and thanksgiving. Often one psalm that starts with something (paraphrased) like 'Where the f... are you God?' ends with something like 'God...there is no one like You. You always guide and protect me, always.' It's an amazing book because I think you can learn more about God's character, and the personal relationship we can have with him, in Psalms than any other book of the good book.
Aren't we all so much like David? Full of potential with a super-capacity to love and admonish and live victoriously but with a tendency to dwell in caves and hide out from life. The Psalms depict the human dilemma so well. We are bundles of love, emotion, angst, worry, depression, dreams, apathy, courage, greed, care and hate from one minute to the next. I often can start out in prayer by thanking God and then only find out that I'm complaining about something thirty seconds later. I am David.
Let's rewind- some people don't even really believe that you can have a
relationship with God that is personal and real. This is often due to the
fucked status of the church in North America. We have dropped the ball
in so many ways. But the key is not self-blame or directed anger. The key is pressing on, still journeying and searching for God in the believable sectors of the tangible and real world, and seeing how He'll usually reply with chariots of fire and strength from the invisible world. But you have to desire that. You have to want to HONESTLY know God. He's not gonna come pounding on every uninterested person's door and say 'Here I am. Come follow me' like a Jehovah's witness. That's annoying. God's not an annoyer, He's a gentleman. And He can wait till You're ready.
'it's times like these you learn to live again'.