Saturday, May 30, 2009

my mulberry street

There are many people that have impacted my life in a significant way, even rocked my world (yes, this is both good and bad). Then there were others that have just said a few short words to me that I've clung to forever as words of wisdom. But being a humble, naive, simple girl from a small town in the east coast, I've never really thought I had the capability to leave a long-lasting memory or impact on someones life.

There are so many things I remember from my childhood, to my teenage years to now - but as I get older there are so many things I forget. And when people try and stir your memory and you still can't remember, it's actually kind of scary (not to be confused with a blackout from drinking, albeit that's scary too). A few years ago I took a creative writing course at George Brown, where our short stories were based on real life situations. I remember our teacher saying to us, "how do we really know for sure with some of our memories being so far back in time if they really did exist". That concept fucks with my mind, because if you don't have proof to back an old memory, it's true - did it really happen? I remember testing this theory about a plant we had in our third year of university. Now the reason I remember this so well is because I can't save a plant, maintain a plant or grow a plant - pathetic really. But this was Rhonda's plant and every time it was literally on death's door, I'd water it and it would grow back to life...almost instantaneously...no joke. So, when I asked the girls about it recently, all three of them couldn't remember the god damn plant. Now, I know what you're thinking, it was university and I was high all the time. Not true(ish). I'm telling you this really did happen, but sadly I have no proof of the memory other than what's inside my wee old head.

This week, my past came into my present in a very surreal way. I re-connected with someone I impacted in both good and bad ways (sadly, I think, more bad than good). Apparently, I hurt this person to a point where they harboured feelings for years, which is crushing because I know how horrible that can be. Fortunately we cleared everything up, I told the story from my point of view (now and then) and that person did the same for me.

Time is a funny and amazing thing. From my memory, I'm pretty sure I was explicit back then about my feelings and felt I articulated them in a way that person would understand. To be honest, I think it was just time and living life that caused that person to re-evaluate our situation.

Very few people have that opportunity in life to face someone or something from their past to let them know they've made an impact and reconcile, if need be. I think we both felt lucky and grateful for what happened this week. Sometimes I wish I had that chance myself, but I'm also happy to just keep moving forward, putting all my memories (tangible or not) in my basket of life.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Why I love my dad so much

I sent my "Check Yes or No" blog to my dad last night...this was his response in email today:

Hi Cheryl..... Nice blog....love George Strait he's a throw back to the "ole" Country...he just recently passed Conway Twitty for the most no one country hits which was 56. Check out "Murder on Music Row" with Alan Jackson ..That tells it all in a song.  Keep on listening to the good stuff....check Yes or No. Love Dad 

Do you not see why I love this man?  Shit, he's the best.

So, I went to YouTube to watch "Murder on Music Row" and found a version by George Strait and Alan Jackson...saweet.  After you watch and read, you'll see what I mean, dad is ALWAYS right about the lyrics to country music.  This song does say it all.  Listening to it and thinking about why my dad loves it make me teary (yes, I know...I'm in touch with my emotions).  Hope, on some level, you feel the same way....or at least see the perspective from a real musician.



And, of course, the lyrics:

Nobody saw them running
From 16th Avenue
They never found the fingerprints
Or the weapon that was used
But someone killed country music
Cut out its heart and soul
They got away with murder
Down on music row
The almight dollar
And the lust for worldwide fame
Slowly killed tradition
And for that, someone shouldhang ("Ahh, you tell 'em Alan")
They all say "Not Guilty!"
But the evidence will show
That murder was committed
Down on music row
For the steel guitars no longer cry
And the fiddles barely play
But drums and rock 'n' roll guitars
Are mixed up in your face
Ol' Hank wouldn't have a chance
On today's radio
Since they committed murder
Down on music row
They thought no one would miss it
Once it was dead and gone
They said no one would buy them ol'
Drinkin' and cheatin' songs ("Oh, but I still buy 'em")
Well there ain't no justice in it
And the hard facts are cold
Murder's been committed
Down on music row
Why they even tell the Possum
To pack up and go back home
There's been an awful murder
Down on music row



Wednesday, May 27, 2009

check yes or no

I'm sitting here watching the "George Strait All-Star Tribute" on TV and I'm completely in my element because no one loves country music more than this kid right here.  It's the one genre of music that people have a preconceived notion of what the audience demographic should look like...umm, did I mention I also still love cowboy boots?  Anyway, I'm not talking about the 'new stuff' like Montgomery-whatever-their-called, Carrie Underwood or even Shania Twain (in fact, Keith Urban & Tim McGraw might be my only exceptions to this rule). I'm talking about Waylon, Willie, Johnny, Charlie, Garth, Kenny, Dolly, Hank and George.  The stuff dad and I listened to growing up.  Sure they get a bad reputation for singing about simple things like trucks, booze and cheatin', but hells isn't that what life (and I mean real life) is all about?  Regardless, the thing I love about country music and the notion of the Grand Ole Opry is that there is something so very real and pure in the music and the lyrics.  Further proof of this for me, is the endless number of times dad has called me on the phone to say, "Cheryl, have you heard the new song and really listened to the lyrics of (insert country song here) - they're so true and beautiful".   And, he was always right.

Basically, the old stuff is not overproduced, over marketed or fabricated. I started thinking about this tonight when listening to one of my sweet favs of George's - a more recent song, "Check yes or no". 

It started way back in third grade
I used to sit beside Emmy Lou Hayes
A pink dress, a matching bow in her ponytail
She kissed me on the school bus, but told me not to tell
Next day I chased her around the playground
Across the monkey bars to the merry-go-round
And Emmy Lou got caught passing me a note, before the teacher took it, I read what she wrote:
Do you love me, do you wanna be my friend?
And if you do, well then don't be afraid to take me by the hand, if you want to.
I think this is how love goes, check yes or no

Now we're grown up and she's my wife
Still like two kids with stars in our eyes
Ain't much changed I still chase Emmy Lou
Up and down the hall, around the bed in our room
Last night I took her out in a white limousine
Twenty years together she still gets to me
Can't believe it's been that long ago
When we got started with just a little note


Isn't it incredible to know this is how we're introduced to love for the first time, and ideally wouldn't it be so quaint if it always remained, for all of us, this way: simple, honest and forthcoming.

ps - George might have the most adorable smile in the music biz.

Monday, May 25, 2009

happiness is...

Every now and then I get inspired to create a piece of "art" that encompasses a themed collection of memories that brought me significant happiness during a period of my life.  Like the collage of running bibs, maps and pics mounted above my bed from all my races over the last 10 years.  But unfortunately there are times when these pieces of art live only as a thought and never come to life.  Like the shadow-box of odds and ends from my hike on the Inca Trail, which would include my walking stick that supported me for four long days.

Today's art: no theme.  just happiness.  various things, in many forms and not from one particular event. It came to me from looking at pictures from yesterday - Todd, Matt, Mya and Cara skipping outside the house. Skipping.  hhhhhmmmm.  I started thinking about all the super duper simple teeny weeny things that make me scream with happy.  So this is next on my 'creative-to-do list', but one thing is for sure - if it comes to life in video form the soundtrack will be "Bubble Toes" by Jack Johnson.  I dare you to listen to that song and a) not feel happy and b) not move like a jellyfish.

stay tuned on my high-priced artwork.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

how can you not love this season


So many people love the crispy cool air of Fall, the warm sweaters and getting cozy indoors. But in the span of three short weeks, this is the scene developing outside of my living room window.  The freshness, greenness, newness of Spring gives me optimism and excitement for all the new experiences that happen each year. 

Happy Spring, enjoy it Toronto before the smog seeps in.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Like a Rock

The weird thing about history is that it happens in the present moment. And it touched me yesterday in a way that I never believed would happen in my short lifetime.

I called home to catch up with my parents; dad answered the phone and I could tell something was wrong. He was irritable, frustrated and although he would never admit it...on some level, confused. He shared the news with me that the GM dealership that he's worked for the last 10 years received their letter from head office in Oshawa that they were one of 240 dealers to close their doors. While some of you may feel on a grander scale this was owed or deserving to the corporation, what you might forget is all the people in all the towns and communities across THIS country that work their ass off to make GM a success. These people, to some extent, have no impact on the decisions that have been made to bring the corporation to it's knees. Their pride and dedication is birthed from a desire to be providers to their family, to have a successful career and to have a company that employs people in that town and community.

Dad has worked for GM for 30+ years, previously at another dealership in my hometown. I grew up with General Motors. It's more than a car company to me - it represents my dad, it represents my family, it represents so many incredible childhood memories. When I was in elementary school, dad used to have to work the odd Saturday. My brother and I would go in with him to the office and we would sit in the cars in the showroom and pretend we were racing each other. We'd always fight over who got the camero with the top down. When I was sixteen, my first job was working the reception desk for 3 weeks in the summer and answering the switchboard for the salesmen, parts, service, finance and the used-car lot. I loved that job and listening to John, Robert, Big Jim and old Haddon talk about how cranky 'my old man was sitting upstairs in his office'. Even thinking back to that building I can say that GM has a rich smell - the combination of the oil, gas and rubber. And when I walk into a GM dealership anywhere in Canada now the smell is consistent and brings me back to Disco Street in Sydney, Nova Scotia. GM IS my dad and what he (and it) stand for - strength, hardworking, commitment and loyal. GM is my university education, my original home on Beechwood, it's the pool in my parents backyard, my family cars and even my value system.

In my adult life, my affinity for the company continued to grow when dad changed dealerships and went to work in Glace Bay, Nova Scotia for Carlo. Not only was dad seeing the happiest years of his life, but he had made an incredible friend. Carlo has been so good to me - from providing me with sexy Aleros and sassy Aveos, to taking care of my sweet Daws on drives from the Cape to Halifax. Carlo was a boss, a friend and a professional advice-taker to my dad. So, GM is way more than a big American company, a country music song, rugged trucks or construction workers. It is a touch, a smell, a family and a passion.

Carlo, remember that from big change, even tradegy, comes sunshine and strength. Hold on to your memories and everything you've built, be proud and strong.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

This too shall pass and return again?

According to Wikipedia, “Eternal Return” is a concept which posits that the universe has been recurring, and will continue to recur in a self-similar form an infinite number of times. There is something within this concept (and the very little I know about it) that I find so incredibly gut-wrenching, yet completely stunning. Imagine if we could give the best (even the worst) moments of our life to the lives lived after ours or if we are living the life of those that already existed - what a mind-blowing thought. In an indirect way, I was introduced to this concept this past weekend and believe there is some connection with how it relates to my desire to live like a freebird.

As you know, I just spent the last six days in Los Angeles. It was, by far, a trip of a lifetime. Last year, I made a pact with myself to embrace my age and celebrate it each year in a big way. It began on my 34th with a solo trip to Machu Pichhu, and this year by sharing it in LA with some of my closest girlies. As you can imagine, the two experiences were vastly different, but remarkable in their own unique ways. While Peru was spiritual, LA was magical. From not skipping a beat with life-long friends (that I haven’t seen in years), to making new ones, experiencing different lifestyles, living 100% in the moment without fear of judgement, decision-making without inhibitions, learning new things from amazing new people and experiencing a surreal earthquake. The combination of the many events was remarkable, unforgettable and completely serendipitous.

As if I didn't know this already, this trip was affirmation that I’ve arrived at a place in my life where I’m beyond confident in my decisions and have not one regret. I feel that although my life and choices are different than those that my friends make, they are truly meant to be made for me and my little ole existence.

So while 'all of the above' may sound like complete fromage to you and you might think that it's a simple case of suffering from post-good-times-blues. How shall I say this... you're wrong. The friend that introduced me to the eternal return concept is a ‘true, professional writer’ - in a related conversation he told me that words are never good enough to express an energy you feel or even the chemistry between certain people. Kinda of sad hearing this from a writer, but he's so right. No matter how hard I try, I cannot express it in words.  I'm aware that the energy experienced in this past weekend was rare, but thankfully it comes around just enough that I know how and when to clutch it tightly. These tiny incredible sparks are fleeting and magical, not to be missed and savoured for your memory to remind you how painfully beautiful life really can be.  

When I started this blog back in April, I mentioned that I’ve wanted to mark my body with this too shall pass. On Friday, May 15, I walked into Zulu Tattoo and was happy to see that I got to lie on a medical bed, basically because I have passed out at the sight of a needle and blood many times in my life. Ironically, knowing where I 'was' and how happy I am at this stage, I never felt more relaxed lying there getting inked. It was euphorhic.

So, I pray that 'eternal return' does exist and that I’m re-enacting someone else's sweet ass life, only to pass it on proudly to the next.

Monday, May 11, 2009

72 hours to go

It will be the first time in seven years since Kirst, Rhonda, Al and I will be together again as KRAC, just like old times(ish) under one roof.  The countdown to L.A. is on and I can hardly sleep.  In fact, just like exam week in university, I've spent my entire night preparing my gift instead of doing a million other pressing things on my 'to-do' list.

You see, about 3 months ago, I suggested that it would be a good idea if we all brought a little giftie for each of us to remember the trip, the reunion and our 35th Birthdays.  Ironically, Rhonda the working mother of two (and pregnant with the third on the way, I might add) was the first to get hers...so the rest of us are scramblin'.  In fact, I'm sure Kirst is at the Dollar store right now.

I can't tell you too much in terms of the details and the inspiration, since it's 'sort of' a surprise, but this is a hint of my wee contribution...





Saturday, May 9, 2009

yo, mama!

There was a time not so long ago that the only woman I thought of on this day was my very own mom.  Without a doubt, she is most definitely the first woman that comes to mind on this day. And it’s one of those days within the year where the distance to Cape Breton Island seems a world apart.

But over the last number of years, there are so many incredible women in my life that are amazing mommies.  And I’m lucky enough to share in their joys, sorrows, tears and happiness in all that it takes to be a mama.  I can honestly say, with conviction, I never tire of their stories and I’m the one always pressuring them to send new pics of the kids.  So, while I don’t have children of my own, I do feel blessed to know things like: gripe water is liquid sanity; you sleep when they sleep; toilet training begins around two but it can take much longer than that and accidents are OK; it’s fine if they don’t walk by the age of one; no one experiences judgment from others like a mother does.  What I don’t know is: what it feels like to dedicate 9+ months of your body to
nurture and grow a small human being; what it feels like to wake up numerous times throughout the night to feed a wee mouth and see a tiny smile in a moonlit room; to get more excited about having a date that includes a movie in a theatre with popcorn than having sex with your guy (wait, I do think I remember what that feels like); to miss your husband even though he's in the same room with you; to feel sick with worry wondering about the little person you created; praying that they become good people or hoping that no one ever, ever breaks their heart or lets them down.  

So mom, for all those years I was too young, too stubborn and too selfish to not recognize you for the things I didn't know about motherhood, I want to say thank you.  Thank you for never, ever giving up on me.  Thank you for being so proud of me, then and today.  Thank you for telling me I have often accomplished a life (and walked a path) you may never have chosen for yourself but that it is still a life worth bragging about to your friends. More importantly, thank you for showing me in these last few years that women do get better with age, that you can find strength within when you lose your most prized feminine possession, that you can maintain a
healthy and active lifestyle in your sixties and that you can find love worth working on every day of your life...within yourself.

And to Samantha, Rod, Danica, Cams, Avery, Jack, Lola, Ethan, Brodie, Nolan, Mara, Riley, Matty,
Ariss, Bruno, Pete, Charlie, Marc, Andrew, and Liam – make sure you let your mom know that your heart aches for her as much as her heart aches for you.


Happy Mother’s Day, Mom...the book is in the mail.

uuummm, May flowers? hello?

It's Saturday, 8am and I couldn't sleep.  So I grabbed Daws, her leash, poop bags and money and went for a jaunt in the 'hood.  After buying a coffee and letting her romp for a bit in the park at the end of the street, I grabbed a Now Magazine and headed back to the front porch. It's the best thing to do early on a weekend morn - coffee, porch, paper and Daws.  On the way back up the street, the sky looked black at one end and you could hear thunder in the distance. Lately, I've been taking my camera with me everywhere I go because I've been capturing precious things that tend to be a unique moment in time.  And I was glad it was in my pocket because this rain and hail storm came on strong and fast.  

For approx 30 mins, we sat there and watched.  It's start mild, bright and hazy and ended in darkness and hail.  Ironically it was incredibly peaceful. 

Now the birds are chirping and the sun is out for the day.

the beginning...rain.
video

(in a matter of minutes)

the end...hail.
video

Friday, May 8, 2009

somewhere over the rainbow

Further to yesterday’s blog post, I just have to say that there is nothing that will give a clean slate to a nasty bout of PMS like two amazing gay men. My beloved friends, Todd & Matt, invited me out to dinner and drinks with them last night when I got home from work. The goal was to cheer Matt up, so you think we would spend the bulk of the evening telling him how awesome he is and saying shit like, "turn that frown upside down". Nope, we didn't change our behaviour one bit in order to lift his mood. The usual gig ensued... Todd and I mocking each other relentlessly, while Matt sits there and has to put up with our diva-like insecurities and paranoia. After 3 hours of laughing, talking, eating, drinking and crying all I can say is that I sure as hell felt better than I did earlier in the day. Not really the goal of the evening, I know. Buuutttt we did solidify plans to see Kylie Minogue in Chicago in October. So given that Kylie is Matt's idol, I'm hoping something good came out of the evening for him.

Today, well...Todd and I were back to our old selves via text. And after our snatchy little banter it ended like this:

Todd: God, I cunt wait for your period to be over.
Cheryl: Um, it hasn’t even started. This is just PMS baby!
Todd: Well…however all that works down there.

Matt, I hope we cheered you up in some way. You should, at the very least, feel good knowing you’re better than the two of us…in every way.

Love you both.
Xo

Thursday, May 7, 2009

it's not easy being green

As a woman, one would think that I would be able to detect the onset of PMS due to a simple calendar, or even by how many pills are left in my child-prevention kit. Nope, I never really consciously pay attention to it. I know when PMS has arrived on my doorstep because I welcome it with tears. Oh boy do I cry and sometimes for days. It can be something simple like finding out I don’t have any peanut butter left in the cupboard for toast or something even more serious, like realizing I didn’t walk Dawson two mornings in a row.

Well, not this month. Why hello there rage, where the hell did you come from? It started Tuesday and has built up to the point of me literally yelling on the phone, in my cubicle at work, to the ignorant, hill-billy that runs my parking spot at work (yes, even typing that felt good). It feels like everything this week is going wrong and is completely senseless (legal disclaimer: this blog entry might be swayed by dramatization). Don’t worry, I have enough self-awareness to know that, yes, in the grand scheme of things in life, most of the shit I’ve been dealing with this week is peanuts. And I agree, the thickness of my PMS goggles just might be distorting the colours coming through the lenses. I totally get that it’s temporary and will work itself out. But when you’re in the middle of it and pre-menstral hormones are oozing through your veins it’s plain ugly. I’m mad and feeling mean.

Thankfully, I feel that the rage may have just climaxed moments ago to an all time high, which oddly enough I’ve resolved by breaking down in tears.

OK, now I’m done. Moving on to next month…

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

make what yer mama gave you

Often when you find a teeny gem in the media or online you want to be the first to share it with your friends.  C'mon we all wanna be that one to stumble upon 'something' that sparks a feeling and great emotion within us (whether it's a baby laughing, stupid dog tricks or giant karaoke events).   But then again, what sparks for me may not spark for you, mostly because I'm a huge cheeseball.  And this is where Clara comes in...

What I want to share with you, hopefully for the first time, is sweet Clara.  I first heard of Clara about 3 weeks ago when I was driving in my car listening to Q on CBC.  Jian Ghomeshi was interviewing Clara, a 93-year-old grandmother and her grandson, Chris.  Basically, Chris made Clara famous by posting videos on YouTube of her cooking her "Great Depression" recipes. These are cheap-as-hell recipes that her mother made for her large family in an incredibly tough time.  While these meals may completely feel like they are out of the 1920s (because they are so basic in nature) they are timeless.  They are so similar to what me ma was putting on our dinner table 20 years ago.  

After listening to Clara's endearing, little cracklin' voice coming through my radio that morning, I instantly grabbed a pen and my notebook (on the passenger seat) and wrote down a reminder to look her up on YouTube.  Sssooooooo the reason this might be ancient news to you is because when I googled "Clara great depression" -  a million (slight exaggeration) links came up where various media have covered Clara and Chris' story.  Now, she has her own website, blog and DVD.  Clara has become an internet sensation because her grandson saw something special in her - her personality, her youthfulness and her simple cooking.  And after doing a bit of 'research', the thing I found most intriguing is that her grandson had been posting these snippets of her cooking since 2007....well before our own economic crash.  How timely that everything old really does become new (and topical) again.          

Clara and Chris really impacted me; their special bond and relationship.  I lost all four of my grandparents before the age of thirteen - they were all in their sixties. There have been many, many moments in my life when I wished so desperately that they were by my side.   My niece Samantha is turning thirteen this summer and I look at how young she is and how there is so much more living that she can hopefully share with her remaining three grandparents. 

Aside from sharing this with you so that you can make cheap and easy recipes (take it from me cheap is super cool now and I love it).  I hope you spend time with your grandparents and parents, loving them for their quirks and their sweet nuances, because those are the memories that will make you smile years from now.  (note: I did warn you that I'm a cheeseball, no?)

Heck, Clara isn't even my grandma and she makes me smile like crazy.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Meet the Jetsons

This past weekend I read an article about a design competition where the goal was to create an architectural solution that would be a temporary home for residents of NYC in the event of a catastrophe.   The featured designer (and I believe winner of the competition) was created by Studio Lindfors, it was called Cloud City.

Because of its population density and concentrated infrastructure, the City is not well suited for traditional post-disaster housing, such as mobile homes. CLOUD CITY is literally an uplifting experience that will allow communities to remain intact as they pull themselves out of the rubble. The homes can be rapidly deployed with minimal site preparation. They are intended to ‘plug in’ to existing utility services, and can be deployed by a team of four workers in roughly an hour. Once airborne, the floating homes allow construction crews below to work unimpeded, speeding up the recovery effort. This in turn reduces cost overruns and unnecessary delays.


I was moved by this so much so that I was thinking about it most of the weekend. I honestly think these types of designs for the way we live are just around the corner.  I remember as a kid thinking how fun it would be to live like the Jetsons, but really only believing that possibility in my lifetime was about as tangible as ‘magic’.  With the rapid pace of technology and human intelligence being used for creations that were once deemed to live only within the walls of our imagination, I can’t help but wonder how many people are noticing the current life around us. Are we taking the time to notice the small things in each day that are breathe-taking and euphoric in simplicity alone?  We’re all running to a distance ahead of us, racing to create a better future – chasing goals and dreams, but in this race to beat our own ‘personal best’ we need to stop, pace ourselves to live the moments that get us there.

So if we move to our Cloud City will we lose the energy and information that exists everywhere in nature? You know that rush and adrenaline you get from waking up super early to watch a sunrise, or to just sit on the beach with a coffee with an old fashioned newspaper, like I did this morning.  I felt so incredibly happy in that moment and again later when I went for a run.   It’s moments like this when I notice my breathing, my abilities, the sky and the skyline and just how lucky I am to have my feet on this earth, and not having my head in the clouds.

While it might be nice to live next door to George and Jane, I’m happy to be grounded right here.

I am Liz Lemon

OK, so this entry is a little off topic of the overall blog theme, but I had to share this latest discovery in my life.  For those of you that don't know me, it will help you to 'get to know me'. And for my beloved friends and family, I hope you pee your pants laughing at some (ok 99.9%) of the similarities.

So, to begin, I absolutely love Tina Fey.  I'm talking massive girl crush here.  It began the first time I saw her on Weekend Update.  But now, I just might be a bigger fan of 'Liz Lemon'.   I've just recently been introduced to 30 Rock and I'm wrapping up my addiction to season one and two before getting caught up in the current season on air now.  I think you'll agree, it's like looking into a mirror.  Well, me looking into a mirror, not you...errr... looking into a mirror. 

Damnit. I so wanted to be Carrie Bradshaw. 

Friday, May 1, 2009

the sky is falling


I never thought I'd say this, but I miss Octomom. I find myself wondering how she's coping at home now with her 14 little seedlings. And I worry about how she's to make a living now that the swine flu has taken over our hearts and minds? The good news about bad news is that it passes quickly. The bad news about bad news is that it is typically replaced with the next 'new' tragedy.

This story of swine is crazy and it's spreading faster than the strain of the virus itself. What's most astonishing is how it is blanketing every ounce of our media right now, and depending on how and what media vehicles you follow it's overwhelming. It's on TV, online videos, newsprint, twitter, facebook groups, blogs, etc. My problem with this news is that when everyone is screaming about it on their respective media channels, as consumers of information, we're not listening to the words themselves instead we're focusing on how it's being said. And all I can hear is tremendous fear and shock. In fact, I wonder how many people on the street today actually even know what swine flu is? This time last week I was shooting a commercial on location, without access to a TV or the internet for 48 hours (now that's shocking in and of itself). When I woke up on Saturday morning it was the first time I heard of the swine flu and I couldn't escape it. I'm not going to lie, it took me a solid 4 days into the frenzy before I even knew what the hell it was. And I'm not trying to discredit the importance of it, but it's hard to know how serious we should be taking this news, especially when 36,000 people die of....how shall I say this...the 'regular' flu in a given year. And there are 15 cases of it in Canada today? And some people that caught it were cured? So, what's a girl to do.

From a pig farm in Mexico to the kitchen sink at my office, the virus and the news of it have spread globally in 7 short days.
Makes you wonder, what's more powerful - our voice or a strain of the influenza virus in pigs.