Saturday, December 30, 2006

And Another Just Begun...

Christmas was just fine. Marilyn and Mike are home, so we had a Sweet clan shindig. (Read: WASPy teasing and passive aggression.) I ate nothing that didn't have a butter foundation, and I feel like I'm waddling a little bit now.

Marilyn and Mike gave me a great Straw Bale construction book: one that has blueprinty details instead of prose. It's what you use when talking to contractors, and I have to learn that language.




Marilyn also gave me a CBC t-shirt with the retro exploding pizza logo on it. Me likey. I don't actually have a lot of t-shirts, so it's great.

Some surprising and exciting news is that one of my great friends from my old life at McMaster is engaged, and she's asked me to stand with her in her wedding! It's Holly, of both this blog and our joint venture Clapboard Jungle. It's going to be a small wedding, which is just my style (as if I have a choice!), and in a Court House, which is even more my style. I've not yet met the groom, Murph, but he's a Yankee Doodle Dandy and a wanted man. I look forward to putting a face to a name.

My big challenge now is getting up to Kitchener for the ceremony. I am now, of course, unemployed, and it's very difficult for me to plan ahead in any way. Money situations aside, I can't predict when I might be getting interviews or work. While she's going to Ohio on the 9th of January to get married near Murph's family, Holly is aiming for the end of January for her Canadian wedding and I'm going to make it a priority to get there to be the freakishly tall blonde that sticks out in any pictures. Big congratulations to both of you! Mazel tov!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Dancin' Fool.

On Thursday night, I went to the Confederation Centre's Christmas Party. You know, to celebrate the birth of our Lord. Huh, now that I think of it, Jesus was rarely mentioned.

They had Sizzler as the caterer, which I thought was funny and kinda hillbilly. Until I tried their chicken breast. Did you know Sizzler makes a mean chicken breast? It's true.

There was a live band, there, too, which has played at other events that the Confed Centre has hosted, and oftentimes the dance floor is empty, so I kinda just assumed that they were no good. I can't say I supported their repertoire as I was in a rabid Beastie Boys mood and they were playing more Kenny Chesney than Adam Yauch, but they were pretty good. They did play some Queen, which always redeems anyone.

Nonetheless, I danced like I was in one of those ALS ads. This was super fun, as I love dancing in non-threatening atmospheres like weddings and livingrooms and showers. Not places where I'm expected to have both a lot of cleavage and a supportive bra. The laws of physics just aren't on my side in those situations.

Unfortunately, I didn't plan ahead since I wore a long-sleeve tutleneck and I was soon uncomfortably warm. And by uncomfortibly warm, I mean, sweating like a pig. My beautiful hair, which looked awesome when I arrived, was soon a stringy mess, and I was stretching at the neck of my sweater like that Dane Cook skit on SNL. Oh, well. I had so much fun. I didn't get home until 3:30am.

I didn't see a lot of the FOH (theatre) crowd, and spent some time with the Gallerians (Shiobhan, Ben, and Monique), but mostly sat with the BO Brigade (Box Officers). I thought that was strange, but we're all kinda intermingled anyway. There were a couple of youngins that got their drink on, and were dancing their teenaged faces off. That is all I have to say about that.

Hey! I guess our Lord was discussed that evening.

"Jesus Christ! Will you stop reminding me how young he is?"

Damn jailbait!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

It'll Freeze Like That.

Ugh. I've joined Facebook. It's some sort of e-cult that all the younger (and some older, and, might I add, more sensible) people at the Confederation Centre are obsessed with. It doesn't seem all that great, but some sort of shiny way to assure yourself you've got friends.

I only joined because I want access to one picture that Kelly's got on her "wall" (or something), but I couldn't get to it unless I registered, and now I have to wait for her to confirm that I'm her friend or something. It sounds like something designed to make 10 year old girls cry and lock themselves in their rooms.

I don't plan to obsessively "check in" to this site like my colleagues. I think this blog is as bandwagony as I plan to get.

E-socializing worries me. I can't put my finger on it. It seems lazy or something, or artificial, or frivolous, or inauthentic, or voyeristic, or creepy, or faddish, and I can't stand the thought of joining in on something I'm uncomfortable with just because everyone else is doing it. Wouldn't I have a lower back tattoo by now if I did? I don't MSN because it's such a timesuck (and maybe that's passe now, so I'm safe), and I don't chat anywhere else.

Friday, December 15, 2006

These Are The Jo(h)ns I Know: Vol 2.

The man featured on today’s “…Jo(h)ns I Know” column is also one of the rare crossovers onto my celebrated Husband List.

I remember hearing John Mayer's “No Such Thing” in the summer of 2001 and really enjoying it. This song is from his second album, Room For Squares. Then “Your Body is a Wonderland” was released, and I was hooked. That line “I’ll never let your head hit the bed without my hand behind it” has got to be one of his most intimate and romantic lines in modern pop.


I bought Room For Squares, and then found Inside Wants Out for less than $10 at a Shopper’s Drug Mart. It was his first EP, which was independently released, and I think it’s his strongest album. I like all the songs on it, and I can still sing along to all of them. "Comfortable", "Love Soon", and "My Stupid Mouth" are among the best.

In 2003, I moved to Hamilton, Ontario, aka, the Armpit of Canada, and many other much worse nicknames, all perfectly apt. When I moved into my first apartment, I didn’t have the internet hooked up, I had no TV, and the radio reception was pretty bad because I was underground and there was probably a lot of interference from the toxic fumes which floated over the city.

I did have my CD player, though, and compilation CD of John Mayer’s music. I played it on a loop as I assembled my futon, desk, bookshelf, and mousetraps.

Heavier Things came out that same year, and while I didn’t like it as much as his first two albums, it was showing quite a bit of range, experimentation, and lack of fear of leaving that which is comfortable. It also contained the song "Daughters," which is heartbreakingly beautiful, and won Best Song at the Grammys in 2005.

John still got slagged off a little bit, however, for being to non-threatening and easy-listening fodder. I came to his defense here ("In Harmer's Way") in this music crit blog. (Read the comments.) At this point, I had started downloading live concerts and starting to appreciate how fantastic a musician and guitarist he is. He can easily flow from very poppy tongue-in-cheek covers of N*Sync and Guns ‘n’ Roses to deep, heavy blues riffs.
Soon after this, John started branching out even further from pop and rock to hip hop and blues. He recorded a song with Kanye West, and released a live album called Try! with the John Mayer Trio, which consisted of John, drummer Steve Jordan and the bassist with the coolest name on the planet, Pino Palladino. This is an amazing album, which, as I became an apologist for earlier, displays John’s mad blues guitar skillz.


Then, this year he also released Continuum, which, to me, sounds less experimental or progressive (for this artist) and more like a happy medium between so many of John’s successes. At first, I thought "Waiting on the World to Change," Continuum’s first release, was a little preachy and political, but I’ve warmed to it considerably, and find it frustrating because some one the vocals in it are difficult to sing along with (although they sound simple, there are complex little turns that sneak up on me).

So, besides me liking John Mayer’s music, there’s John himself. John is that kind of sensitive man that I don’t think I really know in real life. He’s funny, and creative, and obviously sweet, and tall! Not that that matters.

Now, I of course I have to address the disturbing and disheartening rumours that my Johnny is dating that vapid wasteoid Jessica Simpson. I know that this can’t true, but it’s simply part of some sort elaborate practical joke. It’s just gotten out of hand, that’s all. Besides, I’m pretty sure that John likes taller girls with a little meat on their bones. And more than a 90 IQ. He just hasn’t met =cough= her yet.

Thanks for reading this second volume of These are the Jo(h)ns I Know. Note a new Linque du Jour to the left. This is also my last day at the Art Gallery, which is really sad, and I know there’s so much more work that I could do, but the money just ran out and their hands are tied for the time being. Bah humbug! I’ve had a lot of fun, though, and I’ve learned so much more than I ever expected. And, tomorrow, Jackie is off to Florida for Christmas. Bon voyage, moufette!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

These Are The Jo(h)ns I Know, Vol 1.

I am pleased to announce a new series on Sweet Nothings entitled "These are the Jo(h)ns I Know."

I've come to realise that there are many important Jo(h)ns in my life, or at least, I know of a lot of people named Jo(h)n.

You might say, "But Catherine, Jo(h)n is one of the most common names in the Western world. Do you really think other people don't have important Jo(h)ns in their lives?"

I say, "Call me Miss Sweet. And of course other people have important
Jo(h)ns in their lives, but they might not have blogs and obsessed (read: bored) friends who regularly check it, so until they do, I will wield this moderate amount of power and you will read every word I write!"

Volume 1 shall be a twofer. I have to start with my family, of course. This isn't necessarily to do with loyalty, but an unwavering dedication to preventing my sister yelling at me. It's an uphill battle.

John (Jack) Wesley Butt, my Grandad, is a carpenter and lives in Glovertown, Newfoundland. He used to live on North Island, but moved to Glovertown when he was about 6. He worked as a carpenter in the Terra Nova National Park, and also in shipyards, where repitious noise damaged his hearing. In the last ten years he was diagnosed with diabetes, so he has to use diet coke with his rum now: scandal! He is a really good fly fisherman. He is waiting for knee replacement surgery in February, and we're really glad because his arthritis has gotten a lot worse in the last few years. He and my grandmother had five kids; four girls and then Uncle John.

Uncle John, who has the same name as Grandad, works as a carpenter, too. He's a cabinet maker and also lives in Glovertown. Like my grandfather, he does beautiful work and takes pride in craftsmanship. When my sister and I were growing up, we thought he was the epitome of cool, even though he took particular pleasure in teasing Marilyn. He was a lot younger than my aunts and played with us. He had this huge yellow truck that was his pride and joy. He moved to Ontario and met aunt Lissa. They now have three kids and live in a house that Uncle John built accross the street from Grandad.

In the next installment: A John I've never met.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

A Prodigious Snore.

This last week has been a flurry of matinees for A Christmas Carol. There were two evening shows and eight matinees where we sold as many seats as we could to any schools within a one-hour bus-ride radius of the Centre.

We have a very specific way to load in the schoolchildren, and we get very territorial and pissy if a teacher interferes. Well, I do get pissy, but for the most part, I grit my teeth and smile. A theatre full of children smells. It's like pre-BO, running-outside-in-grubby-snowants kind of smell, and I hate it.

We didn't have a lot thrown, had only one puker, and I got to confiscate a camera. and, to top it off, the show was awesome - a good, true telling of Dickens' story. Comic Genius Wade Lynch (tm) played Scrooge, and I must say, he was great. I think he knew that Scrooge is really a buffoon, and played it so.

I have to go change now for another shift in the theatre, but I'll update more hen I can.

(And today we sent out the Emergency Preparedness Plan for the Gallery! Yay! One project done!)

Friday, December 01, 2006

2 Quick Things:

Genesta: sorry I didn't mention it earlier: welcome! When you leave a comment, it doesn't give me your email address, so I can't write you with mine, and I don't want to write my current one on my blog, so I'll give you my old one when I never use (except for possible junk mail) but check every month or so. Then I'll email you with my current address. There! It's that easy! hepcatherine@hotmail.com

Second: I finally updated Clapboard Jungle, after months and months of terrible inactivity. I reviewed Little Miss Sunshine (2006).