The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
19,000 people fit into the new Barclays Center to see Jay-Z perform. This blog was viewed about 100,000 times in 2012. If it were a concert at the Barclays Center, it would take about 5 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.
Well hello traffic spike! Yesterday was a very busy day for The Spadina Monologues, and I’m sure most of that is due to the lovely folks over at Eurail.com linking me up on their Facebook page. They have been my awesome European-extravaganza-benefactors and have been very encouraging and supportive for the kind of rail journey that I wanted to take.
So fanks for the linkage guys! And welcome new readers! Check out my Eurail 2012 category for all the posts on my journey thus far!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to Dropbox like its hot.
Today is a travel day! Taking 3 trains to get from the Czech Republic to Germany, so a long travel day but also a scenic one! I am zooming through snow-capped mountains and little villas! There are rabbits and farmers waving at the trains and ponies running alongside, and a doe! A deer! (A female deer).
So since I have all this free time, time for some of my tips on travelling with iPhones or tablets. Here’s how you can always stay connected whilst on the road without paying high prices.
Avoid Roaming Charges
If you’re from Canada or the USA, your network carrier will try to persuade you to purchase one of their roaming packages for your trip abroad. But if you look at the fine print, you’ll notice that their plans are actually quite outrageous! $5 per gigabyte downloaded. $0.75 per text message sent AND received! And sometimes you can’t even send out messages or calls depending on which country you are in! It is really not worth it. Here’s what you do:
1) If you’re going to be gone for longer than a month, but don’t want to completely deactivate your phone account and lose your phone number, switch your plan into a holding plan. All carriers have an option that lets you hold on to your phone number for about 6 months for a minimal fee, but your phone is essentially deactivated. That way you can’t be charged on your network for roaming or for long distance calls.
2)Turn on airplane mode. iPhones and Androids, and some newer Blackberries, have the airplane mode option. If you turn this on while travelling, you won’t connect to your network carrier but you will still be able to search and connect to wifi sources.
3) Does your phone have SIM card capability? Then buy a SIM card when you arrive at your destination. They are almost always free with whatever finite plan to purchase with it. Get a pay-as-you-go plan of course, that lasts for as long as you’re in the area, for a flat fee, and ideally with unlimited text messages. In the States, AT&T has a $25 plan that lasts for 2 weeks with unlimited texts. In the UK, O2 has a month-long plan for £15.50 with unlimited texts and you can use the plan all over Europe. If you’re in Asia or Africa or South America, ask if the plan you buy is also good in neighbouring countries. Usually when small clusters of countries can share plans and rates. When you need to top up, you can almost always do that online.
4) Don’t have a SIM card-capable smartphone? (aka the Blackberry Curve?) Whip out your old Motorola flip phone that’s collecting dust in your drawer, and buy a local SIM card when you arrive so you are still reachable by your family and can use it in an emergency without paying roaming charges.
5) Another option is to buy a “Global Sim” from an online source. Starting at £29 and increasing from there, they mail you a sim compatible with your phone, or they can include a phone, they assign you a phone number, and your phone is good all over the world. You are charged based on where you are in the world, and who/where you are calling. If you’re doing an RTW, this is the best option rather than buy local SIMs at every stop.
6) Stuck with a stupid flip phone and no wifi capability? Remember that you can send and receive tweets from Twitter via text message! Log into your account and link your phone number to your account. That way you can still converse with the world even when you’re travelling through no-mans-land.
Using North American electronics abroad
Most people are exquisitely annoyed upon their arrival on the other side of the planet and find that the local electrical outlets require different plugs, or that the voltage will blow their hardware right out.
1) Google that shizzle ahead of time! Always always always research ahead of time what kind of plugs are used and what the voltage is in a given country. The Internet has all that information available.
2) Buy plug adapters and/or voltage adapters. All travel shops at home, or even at your destination (best places are airports) will sell these devices which transform your North American plug to a European, UK, Asian, or Australian plug. In North America, all devices are geared for 140 volts, but abroad, they all take 220-240 volts. If you try plugging in your 140volt hair dryer into an outlet in the UK without a voltage adapter, it will blow up in your hands. The good news is that all electronics, like your smartphone, your laptop, your iPad, your camera, etc, are DUAL VOLTAGE, meaning that they automatically can switch the voltage on their own, so all you will need is a plug adapter.
Buying electronics abroad
Did you forget your camera on your desk? Did your laptop break in your luggage? Don’t blow a gasket, you can always buy the exact same products abroad, and sometimes for cheaper without skimping on quality. In 2006, I was in Berlin when my camera just konked out and died. I went and bought another camera for €200, and guess what, I’m still using it today! All the pics you have seen on my blog the past 6 years are from this camera, and long time readers know I take a truckload of pics every day! I’ve dropped that camera countless times, it is scratched and faded, but it still works beautifully. €200 well spent. Bargain, really! But there are even greater bargains to be had if you’re in the right country:
1) Many countries impose taxes on all goods and services bought. Those taxes are then used for a variety of things, from public housing, to the military, to health care. But most governments also recognize that tourists shouldn’t have to pay those taxes since they can’t benefit from them. So they offer refund schemes to tourists. If you buy an iPad in Thailand, for example, from a licensed merchant who also participates in the refund scheme, he will give you the proper documentation you need to claim the tax back. Then when you are leaving the country via the airport, you hand in those documents to the “VAT refund desk” and you get back all the tax you paid on that item. Usually, you are required to have spent a minimum amount on your goods to claim the tax back, and you have to keep all your receipts and the appropriate forms, but it should be rather straightforward. Make sure your merchant participates in the scheme, and if he doesn’t, go elsewhere. Canada also has a refund scheme for tourists. If you’re going to many countries, it is worth googling which one of them also has a scheme. You could end up with some sizeable money in your pocket. But the best part is, you are probably paying less for the exact same device abroad than you would at home.
Don’t double up on electronics
For every expensive piece of hardware you carry, that becomes just one more thing some thief could steal. Carry as few devices as needed. Don’t carry both an iPhone and an iPod! Transfer your mp3s to your phone! Don’t carry your iPhone and your camera! iPhones have excellent cameras on them. Don’t carry both a laptop and an iPad! Are you mad, woman?!
For those of you wondering how I have been able to blog and tweet and Facebook and foursquare and Instagram and email and text and call and google this entire time I have been travelling …. Well…. This is how! Ps follow me on Twitter!
Nuremberg is famous for its Christmas Market and I am arriving right when it’s starting! So excited! I have my mitts, my leg warmers, and my toque! TIME TO PARTY!
On a side note, Czech Republic was my halfway point in this Eurail trip! I can’t believe how far I have come! But still so much more awaits!
Do the photos on this Facebook profile look familiar to you? They should, BECAUSE THEY’RE MINE. I was alerted tonight to this Facebook profile who not only stole all the photos of me that I posted on Twitter and my blog, but she also stole the biography I wrote on the upper right hand side of this blog and is passing it all off as her own! Except she added in the bio that she’s a pharmacist, and changed “atheist” to “catholic.” FIGURES!
She probably found me because she’s from Lebanon originally and now lives in Edmonton, and my ethnicity is half Lebanese.
Layla Mansor, girl, you got some ‘splaining to do.
This is really alarming and distressing to me, as it infringes on my privacy and my person. It is fraud, and it is the behaviour one would expect from an immature cretin of the lowest order.
Layla, honey, you are not me.
But you wish you were.
If everyone could go to her profile and report her for abuse ( the widget is next to the “add as a friend/message” button) that would be greatly appreciated!
This is literally my worst nightmare AND ITS WHY I ALWAYS WATERMARK MY PICS ON HERE, but she stole older pics of me before I started watermarking. This took some serious digging on her part, the pathetic wimp.
Seriously Layla, live your own life, as lame as it may be, because you cannot live mine.
This isn’t the first time this has happened, oddly enough. In 2010 I had a twitter imposter who operated as me for 6 months before I found out AND HAD THEM SHUT DOWN.
Anyone see the movie Catfish?
Someone get Nev Schulman on the phone.
I announced it a couple months ago, and now it’s happening! My cross-European extravaganza with Eurail.com begins imminently!
As you will remember, I was chosen by the good people at Eurail.com to blog and tweet my way across Europe using the rail network. I have to visit 12 cities in 30 days, and I have to do it all on 15€ a day. Totally do-able! I love a good challenge, I live to travel, I’ve bought and used Eurail passes before, and I’m rather frugal in my everyday life anyway, so this challenge is a match made in… I was going to say “heaven,” but really, it’s a match made in Utrecht.
Eurail head office represent!
Anyhoo, coming fresh off the heels of my amazing Thailand-Cambodia-SituAsian, this trip will continue the adventurous spirit and sense of wonder fostered in Asia.
The plan of attack
Now 15€ a day, while do-able, is still quite the challenge. If you’ve ever been to Europe, you know that it isn’t cheap! So obviously I need to approach this with a strategy in mind. Here’s how I’m going to live on 15€ a day without skimping on awesome fun or adventure!
#1 Couchsurfing. Everyone knows I’m a huge fan of hostels and will always sing their praises, but this is one time when even hostels won’t serve my purposes. Luckily there’s an awesome network in place for backpackers on a budget called Couchsurfing. People all over the world connect and offe their couches to travellers. It’s a great way to meet locals and to save your hard earned pennies. I’ve had a Couchsurfing profile for quite some time because I tried it out in New York City and in Vancouver, and had nothing but amazing experiences. So now that I’m going to really Couchsurfing hardcore, I’m really glad I have learned the ropes (somewhat).
#2 Making all my own food. No restaurants or take-outs for this gal! This is a trick I picked up from staying in hostels that offer guest kitchens. If you go to the local grocery store and make your own food, you not only save so much money, but you won’t gain weight because you know exactly what’s going into your meals …. Not that I’m obsessed with my weight or anything. Oh don’t give me that look.
#3 Starting off in Eastern Europe. As someone who has extensively travelled throughout the continent, I have learned just how much cheaper Eastern Europe is compared to the West. Most of the Eastern countries have recently emerged from communism, or from wars, or from severe visa restrictions that kept Westerners out. As such, because they are so new to tourism and their economies are not on parr with the west, the cost of living there is much more affordable. One of the rules regarding this challenge stipulates that if I don’t use the full 15€ one day, the extra cash can rollover to following days. So I’m banking on the fact that I’ll save more money in the east which will come in handy as I head westward and the prices suddenly rise. Who knows, if I save enough, I may even be able to afford a hostel if one of the couches I’ve requested falls through!
#4 Avoiding train reservations. I plan on going into further detail on this point in a later post, but here are the basic details. Most high speed and overnight trains in Europe require a reservation on top of your rail pass. Now Eurail.com has provided me with my Global pass but if I were to take a train that required a reservation that would cost an additional 20€ extra! Which exceeds my budget! However, with some careful planning, some flexibility, and a positive attitude, you can avoid reservations by taking the slower local trains and avoiding all overnight travel. You get to enjoy the scenery, visit towns not normally on your route, and save! For more on train reservations, read this handy guide.
#5 DBahn iPhone app. The German national railway, otherwise known as DBahn, has been publishing up to date train schedules for years, and now they have a handy iPhone app (which also works on my iPad, you can download it here). This service will inform of me of which trains require reservations, when trains arrive and depart, if the schedule has changed, and will basically be my lifeline as I move about Europe. I used to buy the seasonal train schedules DBahn would publish, so I can swear by their accuracy and would encourage you to download it as well if you’re galavant ing across the continent!
#6 Free and cheap activities. You can’t go to Europe and stay indoors! You have to get out and see the city! But many times, doing activities in a city requires a lot of coinage. It doesn’t have to though! There’s lots of things you can do that cost mere pennies, and sometimes nothing at all! I plan on writing an entire blog post about that during my travels, so expect some awesome travel tips this month!
I have been planning and mapping out where I’d like to go, and finalized my itinerary.
As many of you know, I lived in Europe for years, am an EU citizen, and have travelled extensively across the continent. So when deciding where I wanted to go on this trip, I decided to go places in Europe somewhat off the beaten path, places I’ve never been before, places that most Eurail pass holders may or may not gloss over and miss the first time they galavant across the continent.
My chosen cities are as follows.
Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic
As you can see, these are mostly small villages, only Ljubljana is a capital city. These are all countries I’ve been to countless times, but cities I have dreamed of visiting yet never had the chance! You’ll also notice that I’m travelling from East to West, and finish off my travels in Utrecht so I can pay a visit to Eurail.com’s head office for a hello and a high five.
The Mini Challenge
Eurail.com set me a mini challenge within this challenge to ride through Italy during this adventure. As anyone who has ever been to Europe will know, Italy is not only one of the most expensive countries, it also requires a reservation on almost all of their trains. Because I have to live on 15€ a day, and most reservations cost 20€, reservations are out of the question. So I decided to travel to Padua because it is really close to the Slovenian border (where I’ll enter the country) and the Austrian border (where I’ll exit), so I should be able to take noting but local trains and avoid the reservations! Also, Padua is one of the settings in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, and apparently even has a tourist spot called Juliet’s balcony that I can check out. For free, of course!
Lets not mince words or split hairs here, this will definitely be a challenge! Lots could go wrong, and even if it doesn’t, staying under budget could be a strain or a stress! I fully expect at least one Couchsurfing host to withdraw their invitation at the last second, or for me to miss a crucial train connection, or for me to run over budget! It’s all going to happen at least once! But I also expect to meet some amazing people, make new friends, see and explore these areas that I’ve only read about in books! Even when the fit hits the Shan (see what I did there?), you have to remain positive, just remember where you are, get in the spirit of things, and relax. It will all work out in the end. And if it hasn’t worked out, it’s not the end. For more on my travel philosophy, check out my post on long term travel for the solo woman.
Some MORE exciting travel news to announce! This has been in the works for a little while now and I’ve had to keep a lid on it, but now I’ve been given the green light to tell all of my little munchkins!
I have been selected by the good people at Eurail.com to blog, tweet, vlog & photog my way across Europe, armed with some wanderlust and a Eurail Global Pass. I have to hit up at least 12 cities in my favourite continent within 30 days, along with the challenge of posting daily about the adventures I’ll have, the people I’ll meet, the wonderful places I’ll see, and relaying some tips, tricks, and advice about rail travel.
But there’s a catch (of course!):
I have to live on €15 a DAY.
A DAY, PEOPLE!
Eurail.com will provide me with the rail pass and the funds, I just have to use the funds EXTREMELY WISELY.
FINALLY MY PARSIMONIOUSNESS IS BEING PUT TO GOOD USE!
Many of you are probably thinking you could never travel on such a tight budget. Well, as the most frugal backpacker on the planet, I am here to tell you that yes you can.
Many people don’t travel because they think they can’t afford it, that it is a luxury reserved for the rich and idle. I know from years of travel experience that, as long as you rely on your resourcefulness & ingenuity, remain flexible, read the fine print, and pre-plan, you can have an amazing holiday adventure that costs less than a day’s wage. And guess what, you don’t have to skimp on luxury or security (or hygiene, haha) just because you’re not paying top dollar.
I’m going to start this European extravaganza directly after my Thailand & Cambodia Situation (which I have tentatively dubbed The SituAsian. See what I did there?), so expect a more detailed plan of attack around mid-November.
So how did I score this deal?
Many of my long-time readers know that I work hard to have a social media presence. Interacting and engaging in social media has not only rewarded me with writing gigs (yay paycheques!) but also with a quality of living I wouldn’t normally be able to afford (I always say that if I wanted to be rich, I wouldn’t have become a writer).
Ford lent me car so I could take a road trip to Montreal.
Karikuy Tours sent me to Peru so I could climb Machu Picchu.
And Via Rail put me on the cross-Canada train from Toronto to Vancouver, culminating in my lecture at the Social Media Week Conference about my experiences.
And by the grace of Twitter, that’s how I managed to be selected for this opportunity as well. A little over a month ago, I saw this below tweet pop up in my feed.
It generated a lot of discussion in the travel circles, and I noticed a lot of travel bloggers vying for the gig. I ruminated on this opportunity for a few days before finally getting in touch with them and making a case for myself. I had a lot of ideas, and of course a lot of travel experience, so I knew if I were chosen for this I would definitely be able make the experience worthwhile & exciting.
After about a month of discussion and negotiations (they raised it from €10 a day to €15 a day! PHEWF!), Eurail.com chose me for the experience!
I will be revealing more details about this cross-European extravaganza around mid-November. Right now I have to divert all my efforts into preparing for my Thailand-Cambodia-SituAsian (I’m sticking with that name, I don’t care what you say).
In the meantime, munchkins, I hope more of you will be encouraged to push yourselves out of your comfort zone & experience something new!
Today, my delicious little munchkins, there will be fewer posts because I spent hours yesterday making this short film. I didn’t tell anybody, but whilst I was photographing all the amazing graffiti and street art in New York, I was also filming it so I could make something more visceral for the viewers…. it’s like being there with me on the streets of Queens and Brooklyn!
Places filmed include LES, Alphabet City, Soho, Williamsburg, Bushwick, Greenpoint, Astoria and 5Pointz.
Some of the street artists include:
Chris Veng Robots Who Kill
JR’s Inside Out Project
TMNK (Art is my Weapon)
July 11, 2012 | Categories: Art is my Weapon, Curtis Kulig, film, graffiti, Hanksy, hipsters, Inside Out Project, JR, Miyok, movies, new york city, Nick Walker, Occupy Street Walls, Occupy Wall Street, Paul Richard, Rene Gagnon, roa, social media, Space Invader, Spud, street art, street culture, Swoon, travel | 1 Comment »
New York is such an amazing place. One where you can have lame Adrian Grenier hang times one week, and then amazing Eric McCormack hang times the next week.
Alright, I am officially celebrity-hang-timed-out. Leave me alone, famous people. NO PICTURES!
has a celebrity retweeted me and i’m missing it? cuz this tweet of mine has gone a bit stupid now.
it’s a decent amount of RTs, but nothing will ever top this tweet of mine which is still being RT’d to this day.
every day is a good day to go viral.
see you on the twatter, munchkins!
fanks for enjoying this blog guys!
you came for the sass, but you’ll stay for the crass.
speaking of publishing, my novel that i’ve been slaving away at for years is now under the noses of some of the most distinguished publishing houses in north america as we speak. my literary agent submitted my pitch and manuscript a few weeks ago, so now we play the waiting game.
i am so humbled just to be considered.
(aka, i am shitting myself)
i’m not going to name any of the houses just this instant because i think that’s a bit premature (aka i don’t want to jinx it) so i’ll just say that i hope the universe is listening! (and paying out).
last week i saw these meme-vertisements in the east end of toronto, but didn’t blog them right away. then i saw that Copyranter scooped me on it! i photographed em first dammit!
no matter, i thought they were hilarious and funny, and like Copyranter says, the copy is actually FUNNY. way to meme! While advertising doesn’t exactly fit within the ethos of this blog, social media crossed with pop culture crossed with things pasted onto walls definitely does.
still miffed about being scooped …. whatever.
i stupidly tweeted this on saturday night.
which resulted in this guy (the one with over 21,000,000 followers) retweeting me.
(click to enlarge)
….and because of this, it resulted in me being bombarded by those fucking Beliebers. I could not keep up with the thousands of Belieber tweets, RTs, favourites, and follows being directed my way PER SECOND, that STILL hasn’t properly let up yet. Now my twitter feed stinks of the most horrifying thing in the world — puberty. I wouldn’t wish this kind of attention on any other 31 year old woman. He’s a 16 year old boy! What the fuck does he know about anything, other than X-box and masturbation? So why do SO MANY Beliebers treat him like a religious experience? He looks like a moderately powerful pokemon. He’s only famous because he repeated the word BABY more than any other human being in a 3 minute period…. like an autistic child in a maternity ward. That’s not musical talent, that’s a mental illness.
AND his voice sounds like a fox fucking a bagpipe.
Those Beliebers are TERRIFYING! They look like the sort of people you’d find in a Maury Povich holding pen. I betcha if Justin told them to go fuck themselves, they’d give it a shot.
Now from what the Beliebers tell me, there are millions of girls who would kill to get an RT from Justin…. like I should be grateful that I was noticed by a boy who was a ZYGOTE when i was in junior high. If that’s true, then millions of girls need to aspire to greater things in life.
Look Justin, fanks for the RT and all, but you have cursed me with the burden of your crazy hormonal tween fans who would kick the face off a badger to get your attention … and by extension, now my attention.
I will never buy your music, nor will I go to one of your concerts. The only thing that would ruin a Justin Bieber concert would be if my gun jammed.
Both Listen Bird and I would like to find the last 6 centimetres of Toronto that HASN’T been instagram’d yet …. surely it must be out there.
So yesterday i’m parking the car near the Railpath so i can go for a jog…. i put the car into park… look over at the alleyway directly opposite me, and BAM, it’s like a Listen Bird ‘splosion. That wasn’t there last time i parked on this street! Listen Bird has been very busy lately.
luckily i never leave home without my camera. i jumped outta the car and went running down the alley, trying to find the right camera setting to start snapping.
luckily i don’t have an iPhone, so i can’t instagram. HIGH FIVE LB!
i found this on the sidewalk on college street near bellevue. i almost didn’t recognize it because my Facebook account is set to french, so i’m never clicking “like,” i’m clicking “j’aime.” i think if it hadn’t been for the distinct blue used in this stencil, i might have missed it. the thumbs-up symbol is a bit distorted as well, it looks like a weathered mitt.
that being said, i fucking J’AIME this to death. i have no idea who the artist is behind it, but i love the idea of social media mingling with street art, because that is essentially what this blog does!
social media has a huge political component to it, as it has the power to encourage revolutions, to whistle-blow on corrupt regimes, to bring hidden scandals to light, and to spread the daily news of the world to people who might not otherwise see it.
street art is very much the same, as it has a huge political component to it, the power to encourage revolutions, and to satirize/comment on/lampoon political leaders, corrupt regimes, along with the ability to question what the news corporations are telling us to believe.
so to summarize: more of this mingling, please. the two mediums are so heavily linked, they deserve to occupy the same conversations in greater frequencies.
i’ve never been sure how much stock to put into Klout. if you’re not aware, Klout measures your online influence. how do they measure it? ….errm…. well that’s part of Klout’s controversy. no one can really figure out what they’re basing it on (some secret algorithm), and when people’s Klout score suddenly drops 20 points, their measuring system can be seen as rather arbitrary.
but anyhoo, i log in to my klout account yesterday to find that DA MAN
aka Andre The Giant Has A Posse
aka Shepard Fairey
aka Obama HOPE poster
aka Exit Through The Gift Shop/Kwik-E Mart
aka dude who got punched out in Denmark for promoting peace
…..yeah, that AMAZEBALLS DUDE that i’ve profiled on this blog so often he has his own dedicated category,
had given ME a +K in GRAFFITI on klout!!!!!!!!
somebody change my shorts.
if you don’t understand the terminology, “+K” is a fun awarding system Klout has set up to allow users to give their peers and people who influence them “klout-points” in a topic the person in knowledgeable about. for example, most people give me +K in the topics of graffiti, toronto, and social media.
as you can see, the +K came from the verified account of Mr Fairey.
i am extremely honoured and humbled to be noticed by one of my favourite street artists. every time i find one of his pieces, i get all giddy and start jumping up and down like a school girl. when i first found one of his Obey stickers on Houston Street in the Lower East Side of Manhattan near Alphabet City, I literally started jumping up and down and photographed the sticker a bajillion times. I would later find much more of his work around Manhattan and Brooklyn, and even a few impeccably-untouched and preserved stickers around Toronto!
Anyway, fanks sir!
Ps I’d just like to point out that, currently, my Klout score is higher than Shepard Fairey’s …. that can’t be right. See what I mean about that tricky algorithm?!
Check out my Shepard Fairey category to see more of his work that I’ve photographed!
Don’t give me that look.
I’ve had a few medical problems this past year! That COULD be an actual side effect, y’know.
And I have built my empire on TMI!
Pfft, no one uses Google Plus anyway.
The Love A Heart event was a massive success! As I blogged about before, I was asked by the wonder-woman event organizer if I’d like to be auctioned off on a date to the highest bidder, with all the money going to the Heart & Stroke Foundation. Naturally I said yes, but as the event approached, I slowly began to pass a kidney stone of sheer terror. It’s petrifying asking a crowd of 500-plus people to put a dollar value on your debatable-hotness! Bussey had blogged a few weeks ago that I would, in all likelihood, sell for $170 which I thought was extremely generous.
So how much did I sell for?
If I had been wearing underwear that night, they would have needed changing. (Undies are for quitters).
And who was my top bidder?
Although technically he shares me with my wifey, but that goes without saying.
Now please enjoy this photogasm which accurately depicts the depravity and kickassery of the night.
shannon and i have devil eyes!
was nice to see george again. we had a quick catch-up. he sold for $800, which i assumed would have been the top bid of the night. out of nowhere, ryan-gosling-esque Kerry pulls a $1025!! bless his heart, he then matched the bid.
if only all the hosers we knew in highschool back in scarbage could see us now
OMG IS THAT LEN?!! that’s what i was thinking the entire night, dude never comes out! it takes a lot to get him excited about events. he was also my saviour, basically talking me off a ledge for the past two weeks. i was genuinely shitting myself for this event, but he was coo’ing in my BBM ear to just have a laugh and remember it’s for charity (with extra shits n’ giggles). totally worked!
although after i got off stage, my adrenaline suddenly drained, and vicki needed to haul me outside for a quick breather, as i had a wee lil’ panic attack.
did i mention i stayed in a hotel that night? look at me, i’m adult-y.
view of the ROM. years and years ago, i worked as a tour guide on those hop-on-hop-off double decker buses for tourists, and when we’d drive by the ROM (which was still under reconstruction at the time), i used to say this joke to squeeze more tips outta the gullible americans:
“and now we’re going by the Royal Ontario Museum, or the ROM as we like to call it. now as you can see, it’s still under reconstruction, but as you all know… ROM wasn’t built in a day.”
wocka wocka wocka.
i also once worked at the Royal Conservatory of Music….. for one day. i quit that job by the stroke of 5pm.
they were filming some movie or tv show at Varsity Stadium. probably one of those crap canadian tv shows like Being Erica or Flashpoint. (ps sorry to all my actor/director/writer friends who are employed on said-shows. i wuv yoos guise).
Love A Heart is tonight!
my wifey and i are both on the auction block. come buy Valentines-y dates with us!
truth be told, i am kinda shitting myself, but at the end of the day, charity events like this shouldn’t be taken too seriously. it’s supposed to jolly! let’s have a laugh and buy some hotties a pint.
see you there, fellas!
(photography by Paul Hillier)
click on the above image to check me out in today’s Street Style section of BlogTO. BlogTO is one of the biggest (if not THE biggest) Toronto-centric blog out there (along with fellow high-ranking blogs Torontoist, Now Toronto, and The Grid) …. and the trolls who scavenge through the Street Style comments are infamous for their brutality. BRING IT ON, i can take it! (ha, no i can’t. total fragile ego right hurr).
but the best way to respond to internet trolls is to kill them with awesome. case in point:
i love how my wifey and i ended up juxtapositioned next to each other. it’s KISMET!
fanks to Paul Hillier for being such a fun photographer!
heaven, i’m in heaven
and my heart beats so that i can hardly speak
and i seem to find the happiness i seek
when we’re out together dancing cheek to cheek.
heaven, i’m in heaven
and the cares that hung around me through the week
seem to vanish like a gambler’s lucky streak
when we’re out together dancing cheek to cheek.
back in january, i blogged about the Egypt protest TwitPic i shared that somehow ended up going viral, getting well over 30,000 views in just a few days. 12 months later, The London Telegraph has named my TwitPic one of The Most Discussed Twitter Pictures of 2011.
click the above image to check out my lil’ shout-out.
i’m well chuffed, not gonna lie.
Last week I attended the YYZ Living Magazine party where they launched their Winter issue. My travel writing article on Machu Picchu appears in the issue, and they also published my accompanying photographs, so I was excited to celebrate the achievement! I blogged previously when the issue hit the shelves, so if you’d like to read my article and gawk at my photos, click here.
Holding it open to my piece (pg 24 hint hint)
Anyway, because it’s a luxury magazine well known for its interest in fashion, the party was held at the posh new Bloke & 4th on King Street West and the attendee list was peppered heavily with glitterati. I’m more of Chuck Taylors & hoodie kind of gal, so I felt a bit out of my depth, but I tried to dress the part. There were so many fashion photographers floating about, so my mug and threads were photographed several times. It was a bit overwhelming. People kept shoving a lens in my face, saying “You look fierce girl! Where’d you get that fascinator? OMG, to die for.”
The top two photographs are by Devic.
This photo is by Jayne Peres.
This photo is by Spiro Mandylor whom I’ve known for a while because we run in the same social media circles, but we’ve never actually met face to face until this night. He put his likeness in the bottom right corner there. You can see next to me I have my two copies of the issue. I purposefully took two so that I have backup copies for my files and writing portfolio.
Writers, here’s one tip from this pro to you, which I think should be self-evident, but you never know: always keep multiple copies of your published work for your files. Things get damaged, things disappear, things age poorly and crumble. And try to scan them all & post online, so you always have a virtual copy handy. Case in point: my online writing portfolio.
When I say I’m a pro, I ain’t kidding.
Anyway, later that evening after the YYZ party, I made my way over to the Mod Club for #HoHoTO, which I attended last year (read my post from that event, scroll down, that was when my blog posts were super long!) and really enjoyed it. Except this year, they sold out tickets before I could get my hands on one. Luckily my friend Kerry came to my rescue, as he had an extra ticket going unused.
Last name Win, first name Epic.
Of course, more photographers bounding about. These next three photos are by Chris Luckhardt.
Kerry had come to my rescue, but he also got rather, shall we say, festive. Look at him photobombing me and Shashena! Makes me snort every time I look at it.
I could say something about this photo, but I think the comments it garnered on Facebook sum it up rather eloquently:
No need for me to say anything.
Happy Holidaze, munchkins!
if you’re jonesing for a weekend tune to send you fist-pumpin’ around your room like jacked up meth-head, this raucous tune by Knife Party will satisfy you …. LIKE A BOSS.
the song is appropriately entitled “Internet Friends” and details how stalkerazzi some people in your online social circle can be. i was hooked in the first 20 seconds with the following lyrics:
“i bet you’re busy talking to some fucking slut.
is she hotter than me?
would you fuck me?
are you gay?”
LIKE A BOSS.
enjoy the rest of your weekend, wastoids!
never met this guy before in my life, but this tweet was most welcome! read more about my running ethos here.
and for the record, it was a Raider’s hoodie that an old boyfriend from high school left at my place that I claimed as asshole tax. I love that hoodie. and I can’t even remember that boyfriend’s name. It had to have been one of the jocks, surely.