Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Three dog night.

My philosophy has always been: go big or stay home – which may, or may not explain why I woke up spooning a golden retriever in a pup tent in my backyard.

Pup tent... get it? I need fries with gravy and a Diet Coke please.

The clock had all but run out on my deadline to blow $100 bucks in downtown Havenot while living to tell the tale – so I conned my neighbour into coming along for the Monday night ride. I normally would have asked my friend Larry to be my wingman but short of winding up in prison, downtowning it with Larry often ends in a tumble down pizza corner hill and/or standing on a chair singing along to a country and western song chugging whiskey out of a paper cup. In hindsight, Larry would have been safer than taking my neighbour along, as what was intended as a civilized culinary evening turned in to, well, did I mention I woke up in a tent?

First let me explain how I came to possess a Downtown Halifax Business Commission Visa card. The Coles Notes version is: some idiot at Extreme Communications, I'll blame Anthony Taafe*, decided it would be a good idea to hand $100 Visa card to 30 bloggers and set them loose on the downtown core – with hopes that the resulting social marketing frenzy would be a lift for the sagging bosom of downtown Havenot.

Could someone run and get me a milkshake and a Diet Coke?

I had several plans for blowing my wad, none of which came into fruition. Instead of a tub of wrinkle cream from Spirit Spa or taking a hungry hooker for a healthy lunch, I opted to leverage my $100 the worst way I knew how. Casino Nova Scotia. My plan was to win big, then spend big.

Having only forayed into the bowels of the Casino once – with Larry and a pair of Dionne Warwick tickets – I was horrified to see that we had apparently stumbled into that air-conditioned hell on Seniors night. It was also Tabi slacks night, toupee night, and cheap white wine night. Because my head hurts I'll just say, we were up $35 bucks on the slots at one point, but left there with a bit of a glow on and $40 bucks in the hole, because the Downtown Visa card wasn't accepted at the Casino. Just welfare cheques and old-age security.

The Halifax waterfront was hopping and hotter than shit. We passed on several restaurants that looked too busy and made it through the congregation of over-aged bikers who hang out by the ferry terminal. Heading uphill wasn't an appealing option so we hugged the coast and wound up at Bish of all places. I know, a little out of my comfort zone (wardrobe and budget wise) but what the hell, it wasn't my money.

Excuse me, could someone please go get me some egg rolls and a Diet Coke?

As it turns out, it was my money because after we plowed through the world's most expensive and delicious mussels, frites and wine we discovered the Visa card, once again, was a limp dick. The evening was slowly becoming hazy and expensive – but we were on a mission. Before plopping down at the neighbouring Il Mano (Italian for handjob) for a pizza to soak up the wine, I handed the so-far useless Visa to the waiter (who by the way gave French waiters a run for the money on the rudeness scale) to see if it would finally perform. It did. Too well. Champagne flowed and Havenot's best pizza followed, and before we knew it, we were heading home in a cab, covered with stupid grins and tiramisu – over-spent and over-served.

Oh! At one point I thought the man at the next table was winking at me, but he was falling asleep. But it's a start.

Okay, I am wrapping this up because my Big Day Downtown is nowhere near as exciting as the guy with the sex toys and the cocktails at nordinaryrollercoaster.com and besides, I am tired and really fucking thirsty. To make a long boring story short – we arrived home to a house that was so hot it was like Backdraft 2. I walked through the screen door sending it crashing to the floor and I had a combination of the whirlies and hot flashes and needed to lie down, but my bedroom was like an crematorium. It was around that moment that I had a brilliant idea – I'd get the little bastard to pitch the tent in the backyard.

It took a while because it was dark and he wasn't overjoyed to be setting up a tent for his mother, at midnight, but perhaps sensing I wasn't in the mood for bargaining – he got it all organized and I crawled in, and the two dogs crawled in, and within seconds I was in a Big Downtown Day food and alcohol-induced coma, under the starry sky in my backyard.

Would a Baconator and a Diet Coke be too much to ask?

halifaxbroad@gmail.com

*Anthony Taafe isn't really an idiot, quite the opposite in fact.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Morning breath.

I just yawned and the dog stuck her tongue in my mouth, so technically that's sex, right?

Technically that's lesbian sex bordering on beastiality, so whoa, I should write in to my own advice column – but I already have my hands full sifting through some of your fucked-up, daytime drama-worthy dilemmas – some of which aren't really problems at all from my perspective – in fact – some of your so-called Harlequin moments look like a win-win to me but hey, who am I to judge.

I just necked with my dog.

halifaxbroad@gmail.com

FYI: "beastiality" keeps popping up on spell check so I spell checked it on Google and there's a website called www.beastiality.com but I was afraid to click on it in case there was a photo of me necking with my dog. Or worse.

FYI2: I have a host of experts (!) standing by ready to field (laugh at) your concerns so keep 'em coming.

FYI3: My dog just lit a cigarette. I feel cheap.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dear Abby...

I've had buckets of feedback from yesterday's pathetic recount of my weekend pity party, but let's get one thing straight: No, I am not having "man" troubles, unless you're talking about my increased quota of facial hair.

No man = no man troubles.

My heart is also fine. In fact, the flurry of emails and comforting responses drove home the realization that we are all basically the same – swimming with or against the tide, all the while dealing with similar bullshit – like sagging body parts, raising happy kids who don't fuck up, struggling with relationships and assholes, questioning our existence – all the while balancing the cheque book, staying alive and keeping out of prison.

So I have an idea.

I am going to write an advice column. Well, not a real column in the Dear Abby sense of a syndicated column where I'd actually get paid – but an advice column all the same.

Although, answers to life's difficult and often ridiculous questions could be brief because, "Have a glass of wine and tell them to go fuck themselves" is a pretty standard and acceptable response to any situation, don't you think?

Dear Halifax Broad,

I think my husband is cheating on me, but I am afraid to confront him.

Signed,

What to do in New Waterford

My answer would be:

Dear What to do in New Waterford:

Men are pigs. Smash his big screen TV with his favourite golf club. If he doesn't get as angry as you think he normally would, he's a cheating bastard.

Then have a glass of wine and tell him to go fuck himself.

Signed,

Dear Halifax Broad

This is going to be fun. So send in your questions about love, dating, upholstery, how to get cum stains out of a tennis skirt, unsightly nose veins, that red spot on your ass, how to make crack out of baby Aspirin, who gives the best lip wax in Havenot, etc. In return, I'll be as honest and forthright as humanly fucking possible.

halifaxbroad@gmail.com

Monday, August 23, 2010

Range of emotions.

What a fabulous weekend.

I had a massage, flew to the Hamptons for brunch, and had a tumultuous affair with my pool boy.

Actually, no. Truth is, I watched the late summer sun sink into the Golden Arches, just beyond the rink parking lot – twice. Saturday, I curled up on top of the laundry on top of my bed and cried because the tennis was rained out, or maybe because I stood by and supported my son as he made a decision he'll likely regret. Sunday, I witnessed a pathetic pissing match resulting in innocent casualties of a senseless war. And I spent $35 bucks on a plastic cone so my dog wouldn't chew his fucking tail off. Oh, and to round off the weekend, my faith in mankind was totally crushed. (I ate a tub of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream to compensate for that last one.)

Bemoaning my fate at spending another loveless, soul-sucking year in sweatpants, in Havenot, I commented on how lucky my neighbour was to have a handsome, doting husband; a perfect house; carefree days; and a cleaning lady – to which the little bastard said, "Oh, boo hoo."

He was right of course – my weekend pity party was pathetic, and for some reason alcohol-free. I was desperately in need of anger management, and an attitude adjustment. Lacking the necessary funds to hop on a plane and go eat, pray, love – I hopped in my truck and headed to the nearest driving range where I could whack the shit out of a bucket of balls instead of lodging my new Nancy Lopez 9-iron up someone's ass.

Just being at a place called Goodwood, manhandling a potential weapon, made everything a little rosier. I sidled up to my little island of astro turf and sought solace – methodically knocking ball after ball either into therapeutic oblivion, or 4 feet from the tee.

I lofted one into the rhubarb for the broken soul I fought to protect, and lost. I smashed the shit out of a range ball that spewed charm and total bullshit. I swung, and missed, for the heartbroken and the lonely – only to re-focus and swing again – this time driving it exactly where I wanted it to go.

I forced my head down and my spirits up.

Golf is the perfect metaphor for life. You suck one minute, you shine the next – only, in golf – no one gets hurt, there's no one to blame but yourself, and if you're lucky, a drink cart girl will come along and offer up a nice, cold beverage you can knock back in peace, before picking up your ball and soldiering on.

halifaxbroad@gmail.com

Goodwood Family Golf Centre is located on Prospect Bay Road about 5 minutes from the rotary. The haddock from the fish & chip wagon in their parking lot is better than sex or revenge.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Oh, what a feeling.

The conversation went something like this:

TOYOTA: Toyota service, how can I help you?

ME: I received a recall notice on my Tacoma, so I'd like to deal with that.

TOYOTA: Certainly Ma'am, when would you like to come in?

ME: Well... never... but since it's a recall, and I don't want my car to careen uncontrollably into another Toyota, then I guess I have no choice. When do you have a loaner vehicle available?

TOYOTA: I'm sorry Ma'am, we don't have loaner vehicles, but you are welcome to hop on our convenient courtesy shuttle that comes by every 15 minutes.

ME: Gosh, that's such a fabulous option. I have a sinus infection that feels like a brain tumor, so I'd love nothing more than to pile into a minivan with 7 other pissed off Toyota owners and wait my turn to get dropped off like a challenged senior citizen in an Access-a-Bus. I don't think so. What are my other options? How about cab chits?

TOYOTA: Well, that depends.

ME: Depends on what?! How many innocent people I have the potential to kill on my way to Toyota to have my recall repaired. Three deaths = one cab chit?

TOYOTA: No ma'am, where we have the convenient courtesy shuttle we no longer need cab chits. So will you be waiting for your vehicle or will you be dropping it off?

ME: Well, what's the difference? If I sit and wait, will it get done faster than if I drop it off and catch the convenient courtesy shuttle, then crawl back on my hands and knees to pick it up?

TOYOTA: It'll take about an hour.

ME: Which would be approximately the length of time to get picked up and dropped off – then if I am lucky and time it perfectly – picked up again by your convenient courtesy shuttle.

TOYOTA: Yes, ma'am.

ME: Well, while it's in there for a recall, you may want to look at the front passenger side window. It has a mind of it's own.

TOYOTA: (Typing) That's the front passenger window... it does what?

ME: It does nothing. It doesn't go up or down sometimes.

TOYOTA: How often?

ME: Well, once would be enough don't you think, but actually it happens all the time.

TOYOTA: Like how often?

ME: Like about as often as that fucking convenient courtesy shuttle swings by to pick up the pissed off and inconvenienced.

TOYOTA: (Typing) So front passenger window gets stuck every 15 minutes?

ME: Good enough, hey, while I am in there, the radio also has a mind of its own. It goes off and on at will.

TOYOTA: How often?

ME: Fuck. I don't know. Again, I would think once was enough, but would it get me a cab chit if I said it happened quite frequently and not necessarily in harmony with the car window, although that would be some feat of Japanese engineering, wouldn't it? I'm no mechanic but I'd say there's a bit of an electrical short somewhere.

TOYOTA: (Typing) Okay Ma'am, we'll take a look at the radio, now, how many kilometres are on the vehicle?

ME: I don't know... I'm guessing 29,000-ish, give or take a 1000.

TOYOTA: Oh dear.

ME: Oh dear, what?

TOYOTA: Oh dear, you are way overdue for your oil change, you really should have been in around 26,000. It is very important to have routine...

ME: (interrupting) Are you lecturing me? Because if I wanted a fucking lecture I would have called my Aunt Dorothy.

TOYOTA: I didn't intend it to sound like a lecture Ma'am.

ME: Well, it did sound like a lecture, and considering you are TOY-fucking-OTA not to mention I had to sit through Pokemon: The Movie and the whole WWII thing, I would say you are hardly in any position to be pointing a finger at me for being negligent. In fact you should send Akio Toyoda over to kiss my fat ass and personally pick up my devalued, recalled bucket of shit – then deliver it back with a complimentary spit, polish and rim job good enough for Anne of fucking Green Gables.

TOYOTA: So (typing) 29,000.

ME: I heard that.

TOYOTA: Heard what, Ma'am?

ME: That little disapproving tsk-tsk noise you just made, and don't call me Ma'am. If you must know, the little sticker in the window says September or 26,000 kilometres so technically I am early, because I chose September.

TOYOTA: Ma'am it's not September OR 26,000 it's whatever comes first.

ME: Are you arguing with me, because if I wanted to argue with someone, I'd wake my kid up and ask him to empty the dishwasher.

TOYOTA: No Ma'am. So, would Tuesday the 17th at ten work? And will you be dropping off or waiting?

ME: That depends. Do you have a karaoke machine and a sushi bar?

TOYOTA: No Ma'am, we have a complimentary coffee shop.

ME: Complimentary, as in it'll tell me my ass looks great in these sweat pants, or complimentary, as in free?

TOYOTA: Complimentary, as in some items are free of charge.

ME: Some. Is that like, only some Toyotas accelerate uncontrollably? What about the karaoke machine?

TOYOTA: I am sorry Ma'am, no karaoke, but there is a television and convenient work stations.

ME: Oh boy. In that case, I'll bring the little bastard and his friends, so they can have breakfast, lunch and dinner while I am waiting. Did I mention he has Tourettes and all his friends have ADHD? He also juggles. They'll knock back a few dozen powder donuts and hot chocolates, then sit in the shiny new showroom cars and fart while making electrical engine explosion noises and get white donut stuff and boy sweat all over the interiors. So yes, we'll wait.

TOYOTA: Ma'am, I'll talk to the Manager and see about a cab chit.

ME: どうもありがとう

halifaxbroad@gmail.com

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Wade in the water (and fetch me my golf ball, Toby).

Violating a sofa cushion was the closest my dog had been to romance – but he had a perpetual boner the moment we crossed the Canso Causeway into Cape Breton.

Perhaps the combination of natural beauty and inbreeding suited his erstwhile celibate nature – either that – or he is a descendant of the virile coyotes currently playing havoc with folk singers and campers from Broad Cove (no relation) to Meat Cove.

Whatever it is, or was, I confess to feeling a bit lovestruck myself, having spent a few days in the strong arms of the Highlands. I can think of nothing else besides the breathtaking water hazards and "Killiecrankie" – the aptly named 7th hole of the Highland Links – the legendary, randy Scot that devoured a dozen or so of my precious balls, and had me bending over in the bushes with every stroke.

I also lie awake at night thinking about the view from our cottage at Glenghorm Beach Resort, the friendly people, and the seafood chowder – rich with scallops and lobster – that reinforced the notion that size really does matter. It was the biggest and the best I've ever had.

Three days in Cape Breton wasn't enough, but it was long enough to reinforce my anger toward the dickheads who run this province – the elected oafs who overlook the commodity that is lying here unspoiled, underfunded, and under appreciated. Tourism. How anyone can walk on to the most spectacular golf course, mid-summer without a tee time, is a pleasure, and a pity. The attractions and accommodations of this postcard-pretty province should be overflowing with tourists horny for an experience they'll carry with them like happy herpes.

Instead, the icing on the shitcake: Nova Scotia has been crowned Canada's Mississippi of the North. Our neighbour, P.E.I. gets Regis and Kelly, and we get the sequel to "Uncle Tom's Cabin". Maybe that was the plan – take away the lifelines – the Maine ferry, direct European flights – and bring back the Underground fucking Railway.

Way to go, Canada's Ocean Playground.

Nevertheless, I remain a dog with a bone about getting back up to the Highlands. The deals are amazing from Dundee to Ingonish, and I even test drove a set of Nancy Lopez clubs at Golf Central in Bayer's Lake. (The golf courses of Cape Breton make you want to be a better woman.) Now, I lie awake at night, touching myself, thinking about Nancy Lopez's fat ass bending over to pick up a ball on #11, Bonnie Burn.

My dog, he lies next to my bed, dreaming coyote dreams and licking where his balls used to be.

Maybe he should run for Premier.

halifaxbroad@gmail.com