Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Made in China

China could easily take over the world. Imagine if they stopped receiving shipment of our raw goods and refused to keep turning our raw materials into cheap crap and shipping it back to us at big-box discount prices that allows local retailers to justify providing no customer service. We'd all be naked and starving because we've long forgotten how to produce our own products from our own natural resources.

Seriously. I was at the grocery store the other day (the one with zero customer service) and bought a bag of fresh green peas. They were grown in North America and packaged in China! How the h*ll can that be justifiable?

So I decided I'd try to support more local products. My next couple of bags of fresh produce were purchased from the Farmer's Market that recently opened in my neighbourhood. I even went to a local bakery for bread one day. Eight bucks for 2 loaves nearly killed me, but I did my part for the economy. The bread was good.

Today is payday. I haven't really done a full-fledged grocery shopping for a while, so off I headed to my neighbourhood-no-service-but-cheaper-priced-made-in-china-products grocery store with my reusable grocery bags that were made in China.

I find that 2:30-3:30 is a good time to go cuz all the moms have gone home to pick up children after school. There was plenty of parking and a quick glance towards the tills told me I was smart in arriving at this time - there were only 1 or 2 people in each line. I had my trusty made-in-china fake one dollar coin in my hand ready to insert into the shopping cart. I was stopped dead in my tracks. There were no carts in the store and I hadn't brought one in with me.

There were two different groups of 3 to 4 employees standing just inside the door chatting amongst each other. One group was deep in discussion about a recent movie they watched. I couldn't hear the other conversation. But neither group heard nor cared about me muttering words from the universal language of cussing as I headed back out the door.

One the short 48-second trek back to my car I thought, "Ya know, the only products I really need are sour cream, stuffing for the turkey that's in my oven and hair dye. I can get those somewhere else. And I had just seen a really cute pair of sandals a couple of weeks ago. I think I'll go get 'em."

I piled my hair products, sour cream and stuffing into a cart and headed off to the shoe department. And wouldn't you know it. There were none left in my size... and it's still winter here!

So home I headed, without new shoes, after handing over my hard earned money to Wal-mart, king of big-box-made-in-China, accomplishing nothing in the process.

I'll get new sandals in May when I go to Vancouver. Probably in China Town.

Friday, April 25, 2008

You are not uninvited.

The wedding invitations have gone out. Did you get yours? Maybe it was lost in the mail. That's too bad cuz they are very cool. But just because an invitation didn't arrive at your door that doesn't mean you are not welcome to attend.

The truth is the invitations are very cool and made of leather and I am very lazy and only made 75 of them. So, if you are an out-of-town cousin or friend or acquaintance whose address was not easily accessible, you didn't actually get one sent to you. Being in a family of 4700 people, I'm sure you can understand this - imagine how many leather coats I would have had to rip apart to make that many invites. It just didn't happen.

But I can only think of about 3 people whom we would not welcome to attend, so if you are not included in that 3, please come join us to celebrate the marriage of Ken and Jade.

(if you click these they should open big enough to read)

Monday, April 21, 2008

A most perplexing riddle for you....

What do the following items have in common:

23 empty water bottles
3 full water bottles
2 ghetto blasters
1 clock radio
3 pair of scissors
17 pens
1 empty soup can
1 serge protector extension cord
4 socks
5 small stuffed dogs
1 large stuffed whale
1 magnifying glass
2 cordless drills, complete with their chargers but no cases
2 paring knives
1 Tupperware bowl with unidentifiable green fuzzy contents
2 boxes of 200 Christmas lights
8 DVD's and CD's
2 books
1 first aid kit

I'd be willing to bet that your first guess is not the items found in my son's bed when I cleaned his room yesterday.

Jed flew down to Vancouver to spend a few days with Brandi and Kore and I decided to overhaul his room while he was gone because the basement renovations are starting this week.

I know you think I am exaggerating. And I know you think I said "items found in my son's bedroom." But no, I said "in my son's bed." And I am not exaggerating. As a matter of fact I stopped way short of filling the actual list which also included 2 heating pads, 3 pillows, a quilt, 2 toy cars, a dozen feet of "Do Not Cross" yellow tape, 2 pair of sunglasses, 3 toques, 4 baseball caps, peels from at least 2 oranges, a full container of applesauce, 2 tape measures, 37 pocket sized Cougars 2007/08 schedules, 1 screw driver, 1 dog nail clippers, a ziploc bag of dice, a calendar...

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The 10 o'clock rule.

"Hu-hullo." I stammered out my first words this morning whilst still in a dead sleep.

My ears are assaulted with a far-too-cheerful, "Hi! Is Albert there?"

"He's sleeping. He just got home from nightshift."

"Ok, I wasn't sure what shift he was on. This is [blank] [blank]" (He said his name. My mind inserted expletives.) "I'm a friend of his. I just called to chat. No biggy."

Now, I'd have to say he's not that close of a friend if he thought there'd be even a remote chance that Albert, no matter what shift he's on, would be up and looking forward to chatting about nothing in particular at 7:40 in the frigging morning.

7:40! Someone called to chat at 7:40 in the morning. I hope this chat meant someone died or else your house is on fire. There is no other excuse for it. Didn't your mother ever teach you the 10 o'clock rule? You don't phone before 10am. You don't phone after 10pm, unless you've been given specific approval to do so.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Sew much fun.

So we've been shopping online for wedding attire, decorations and such. Jade is quite frugal and is really not impressed with how much everything costs.

"I think I'll make my dad's outfit," she says. "Will you help me? I've never really sewed much."

Now, I should have clued in to how little her experience was when she referred to the pattern as a stencil, but the real clincher was when she asked what the foot pedal was for when I was setting up the machine.

I know how to sew. But I don't love it. And I'm a lazy sewer. If there's a short-cut I'll take it. I cannot count the number of times I said to her, "This is what you are supposed to do... but this is how I always do it. Do as I say, not as I do."

I made her do some little practice exercises that I can remember learning in school decades ago, and then we jumped into the project. And I have to say I'm quite impressed at how it's turning out. Most first-time projects don't include facings, collars, set-in sleeves, braided trim and vinyl trim. And most people who have never touched a sewing machine before don't begin by tackling the outfit for the father-of-the-bride. But we are not most people.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Never a dull moment.

My hairdresser broke her shoulder. I've needed a haircut for a couple of weeks, but I've put it off hoping Lisa would make a miraculous recovery - or else Kerri would fly her butt home from Texas. Neither happened. I could put it off no longer and made an appointment with whomever was available this morning.

While it's not quite the buzz-cut I got in PEI, it's a close second. The bristles on my neck, where she used a razor, are irritating and I feel a little light headed. I guess that will explain why I didn't really notice when Jed put a Burger King crown on my head at some point this evening, either while I was deep in concentration at the computer. (Probably playing scrabulous or Ebaying) or while I was being tormented in front of the TV with yet another Canuck loss.

I really don't know if I was wearing it while Connie and Jordanna popped in for a short visit. And if I had it on while Jim sat here watching hockey with us, he didn't say anything. Truly I didn't feel that I had anything on my head and nearly jumped out of my skin when I went into the washroom a few minutes ago and the reflection that stared back at me had no hair and a large crown perched on top. (Jed has been in bed for an hour and a half - so I was wearing it longer than that)

Ahhh.... never a dull moment in my life.

Consider Yourself Reminded.

Ten years. It's been 10 years today since I was branded with that title that no-one ever wants to wear. That is until you receive it. ...