chance the rapper-the be encouraged tour

“my mom says in arabic that when it’s raining and sunny, rats are getting married”

chance got finer.

it started innocently enough-i noticed that the show got rescheduled to the day that my season boo was coming to my home for the first time, and casually texted her about it, though she was just coming off of seeing him at the palace of auburn hills (yes, i am sad that i’ll prolly never see the pistons play there).

we had a lovely day of making soup and working on projects, separately and together, napping and watching many monsoons from my window. we made references to going to the show all day, but we both had things to do and, well.

around 5pm, we were called by carbs, and since she’s a vegan who hasn’t yet experienced doomie‘s (propagandistic comics and all), we decided to walk between showers the two now lovely-scented parkdale streets that separate me and the resto. we paid our respects to the lovely guard dog with a fierce underbite in the bougie flower shop, and settled into one of the window booths. i did a double-take in time and space when a pianist that i knew almost a decade ago in montreal walked past and we caught up for a minute before i just accepted that my hair would be smelling like fried.

but delicious mac and cheese (with mushrooms) and deep fried oreos later, we were full and happy and ready to make our way towards a very ominous cloud to see this guy. considering that it was a reschedule, it was pretty breezy to get a ticket.

the bag check should’ve been foreshadowing, but we were high and happy and made it through lightning and humidity and the dj’s name was oreo and there numbers and signs everywhere.

and the rapper was perfect-he was sounding right and looking right and his energy is amazing, if a bit too religious in that way that american artists get that make it a bit uncomfortable to sing along to sometimes. the special effects blended right in with mother nature’s downpour, and even though we were standing in sponges (i have yet to check on the canvas shoes that i left outside, but if someone took them-good riddance), it was beauty-full to be dancing in the rain.

the subsequent push to get to bags that was longer than the concert by a duration of 1.5 x? not so fun. but i suppose this is what happens when you throw 3000+ bags onto the floor and expect people to wait in line and retrieve them when it’s been pouring rain all night.

but it was hilarious to be amongst the high school kids budging the line and that one dood who “had to tutor french at 9am” and was feeling all the feelings over it. it was extra hilarious because he butt into the line, and then was lamenting this, and figured out 25 minutes later that it was the bag line and not the line to leave.

and canadians are hella polite, yo. i’m surprised that there was no riots, especially with all those bored white people excited about a “hype” rap show ready to fight garbage cans and shit.

based on the “blessings” that came down, i’m not sure what “praises” went up, but congrats to all the rats that celebrated their nuptials yesterday-it was an honour to be in your presence.

charmie deller

“you can’t stop what’s meant to be”

one of my editors once told me that hip hop writers are too insular. that was almost a decade ago, and as much as the music and the avenues have changed, i may be closer to accepting this as truth now.

i suppose there will always be a level of missed opportunity due to a lack of listening, and tonight was no exception. i mean-i only came in for the tail end of the panel, but i don’t believe anyone made a tie to the artists that would come directly afterwards, and it was an oversight not to point out the fact that charmie is and has been on her hustle game for real. i mean, there’s no better example of someone who is true to her (he)art and puts in the hours.

it was actually quite shame-full that one of the panelists, who was admonishing people for not listening to what he had to say, not only didn’t seem to know her name or her story to introduce her, but was also then talking loudly by the stage during her set. but i’ve been biased against such “expert” for a minute, biased in a way that i think he’s wack as shit. but people seem to want to pay him, so hey-get that money.

but let’s go back to making your own lane-i’ve been seeing babygirl on different stages over the past few years, but mostly-i see her (and her drummer), on the street. no matter the weather, i see her out there-by the eaton centre, at the acc, singing her songs and shining her light. i’m floored by the actual time that she must spend singing on the street, because i don’t even go out that much, and i still manage to catch her often enough to notice.

i heard when she won the lula showcase last year, from a producer who was so amped by seeing her that he was moved to work with an artist again for the first time in a long time, so in a way, it was full circle to see her on the stage there tonight. it was also clear that all of her busking time has seasoned her for a more intimate, no-frills arena, because her most power-full moments were when she stepped away from the mic, moved closer to the crowd, sang a cappella and played her guitar.

hey-i did see bettye lavette sing without a mic at metropolis at 70+ years old, so-anything is possible.

in contrast with the headliner, who had a sick band and all the trappings of a “professional musician”, all i saw was the future for charmie, because her songwriting has only gotten better and better, her work ethic remains on point, and her spirit is undeniable.

“we support ourselves when we support each other”

thank you for acknowledging my one clap, and i see you, star.

keep singing the truth.

revisionist history

so yesterday i decided to binge-listen revisionist history. luckily, there are only ten episodes and the duration of each episode is around thirty minutes. (the last time i binge-listened to a podcast was when i was unemployed when i first moved to toronto, and i was a bit squirrely after about 95 hours of radiolab-straight).

the first point to hit me was in the discussion of orthodox generosity, in which gladwell defines generosity as “the ability to be open”, which is not one that i can locate now, nor have ever heard before. i suppose it is the other side of giving, which is traditionally how i have understood generosity-with time, knowledge, love, support and money. i suppose doing all those things because you are open to change in people, circumstances, and the world, or the simple acceptance of the fact that you can be open to the possibility that peoples’ circumstances are not like your own and that’s ok is the other side. being open to receive the change that you are helping to affect?

the other point that i thought a lot about was how folks let one in the door and that becomes the allowance to shut the door firmly on the rest because they’ve done their duty, they’re patting themselves on the back for being progressive. it was almost with an assured tone that he closed that episode-“it makes me think of hillary clinton, and how she won’t have it easy.”

(yes, i listened to them backwards).

the discussion of how white people felt freer to be more racist and horrible to black people than ever because they’d done their (lifetime) civic duty and voted for barack obama, and that makes sense that the rise of institutionalized racism (and its public evidence/backlash) would happen during his tenure, and it also gives some context to “some of my best friends are…” justifications.

that discussion of countries who were one and done with female leaders was very, very fascinating, and just goes to show how much traction we can get out of the black men vs. all women argument, but in the end, we’re all just figureheads in the face of a broken system of patriarchal institutions. remember, canada-ours was appointed, not elected and not for a full term. btw-elizabeth may-as long as you’re riding that tricycle, i am voting for you and your party.

i posted a picture of someone’s sign at the march that read “so i’ll see all you nice white ladies at the next #BLM march, right?” and a white woman (who had the means and opportunity to go to washington) commented that she didn’t see much “divisiveness” there, which i perceive as a pushback because it was a callout for white women to do their due diligence when it’s not “their” march, so i responded about keeping that spirit in mind when homecourt advantage shifts, and we’ll see.

now, i’m not co-signing with this tactic, but i’m not not:

maybe if you hear it from “one of your own”, it will resonate more.

my final curiosity from the wonder-full series is if the theory works in reverse. now that trump has been elected, will white people feel more empathy than they ever have? will they give money to strangers and shit, start standing alongside women and minorities in their workplaces, on the bus, at the bank, on the road, in the pool, in higher education, at the laundromat-even when nobody’s watching to give them an award?

we will see indeed.

everything we make…

is love.

happy 2017, everyone.

i am great-full for the recent foray to the wet coast, where things were slow and i didn’t think about work or money for a whole week.

i lived out of a carry-on and slept on an ottoman.

i saw myself in the mirror and saw the inspiration for going the other way.

i now understand what a lane home is.

i ate too much and didn’t exercise at all.

i watched more television than i have in the past three years.

i am glad to be home, where my projects and my clothes are.

i was so delighted to fall asleep on my own couch, and sleep in in my own bed.

i love that the first computer resurrected, and how much prince the itunes is playing.

i love that dufferin street is fixed (for now).

i love that i gave myself the chance to finish projects and enjoy my home.

i am looking forward to going back to work.

just not tomorrow.

pour garder un homme pour toujours

peindre les yeux
avec un oeil ouvert
allonger tes cils
avec une ancienne brosse noire
pour avoir l’air d’une minette
toute coquette

il est simple
et il juge rapidement
d’un seul et premier coup
qui declenche tous ceux qui suivront
si tu le vois
trop honnetement
il aura peur
si tu le vois
tel qu’il est
il se mettra en colere
mais si tu veux vraiment le voir
juste le regarder simplement
attirer visuellement son attention
et puis le laisser passer
le defigurer est le faux-pas le plus grave
parce qu’il a besoin de se sentir libre
et pour proteger sa liberte
il va mentir

il ment avec ses yeux
il ment avec ses complices en geste et en mots
et s’il ment en corps,
il ment encore
il ment en coeur
il ment en courant
actuellement
et quand tu ne le veux plus,
il est a toi.

going through my filing cabinet today, i found the snoopy book that i mourned because i kept it here along, and this piece that i wrote in 2007 in french class.

um, i’m fucking niiice en francais aussi.

shit.

i guess that light bill had to be paid

“are police supposed to do this?”

after a discussion with someone last week about what we like in porn (and his answer being “amateur” because it was “something real”), i realized that what i like is something with a story-and the more outlandish, the better.

and by that i mean different from the dominant porn narrative, which already exists in a vacuum and is ridiculous. you couldn’t find anyone further away from being turned on by the ol’ no pleasure for women with unrealistic nails who are just passive receptacles until you jizz on their faces-and they love it.

once someone showed me something “with a twist”-for the money shot, all of a sudden, a nectarine was produced to hold the jizz, and then she ate it.

men are so basic.

no, what i’m talking about is a ridiculous scenario that people can still act through, keep the facade alive-i’ll never forget the one i saw about a nude intruder on the premises who was stealing the garbage, so of course, buddy had to go out there, wrestle her out of his recycling bin, and fuck her. yup-it was a human enactment of woman as raccoon.

or the one where three doods were just hanging out on a rooftop with their dicks out as bats, playing baseball-hitting actual baseballs with their fucking dicks. now, correct me if i’m wrong, but them shits is hard. (in this case, the balls and the bats were hard). they did this for a little while, until a woman magically appeared when they needed to sharpen their bats and then they went to town on her on a workout bench. and she was dressed like the mary j. blige what’s the 411 video-with her tits out.

so, for the sake of a story, and an annual check-in with porn, i decided to go looking. what i found was a video called “police brutality” that involved two buxom white female officers busting a scrawny black “perp” for home invasion, and then making him fuck his way to freedom.

now, despite how many problems there are with this premise, and it’s no coincidence that it appears in our current political climate, it’s just pitiful to watch because the poor man looks so forlorn and makes the most furtive eye contact with the camera-knowing that his mama and aunties and younger female cousins will make so much fun of him if ever they saw this, not to mention his boys. it’s really in your face, actors-you give it all away.

but not only is he full out embarrassed, he cannot maintain an erection-i have no idea why, as the more dominant woman is barking at him to be grateful that “this female officer is sucking your big cock” instead of taking him to jail. the poor thing is seated on the floor, sandwiched between the women in very convincing cop uniforms (complete with shoes and holsters) and while the one is kneeling awkwardly to work his flaccid member in her mouth, the other one is straddling his face, first backwards (so she can supervise and yell) and then forward, and while she’s barking the order to “eat my fucking pussy”, i’m worried that his poor little neck will snap.

overall, it’s not sexy, but i’m mesmerized. this is what porn has always been for me-a revealing sociological study. and humans are so fascinating and ridiculous.

i hope at least that this poor man got his light bill paid, because short of losing a bet, i don’t know why he was there, and it didn’t seem like he did either.

falling in love again

“when you’re out here in the world, i’m still your girl”

yesterday i was heavy on my hibernating, as i need to do. having and making a home is important to me, because how else can we be in the world if we don’t have somewhere to retreat to?

i knew i wasn’t leaving when i whipped up a chicken and mushroom risotto so perfect that i fell in love with my damn self. there’s something so great about making things, but food, art, music and love? that’s the reason we’re here.

cleaning my bathroom with the soft scrubber i made, doing my laundry with the dryer sheets that i made, writing letters on the stationary that i made, updating my puzzle heart structure with the folds that i made, whipping coconut cream and getting it everywhere? ok, that one was a fail.

i almost didn’t make it out at all, but i had to take out the compost and recycling, and decided to get my parka on and head to the water to catch some crisp sunshine and marvel at how cobalt the moving water is, and how periwinkle the sky is, and how lapis lazuli the whole thing together is. with wu-tang in my ears, the vision of my next incarnation of ruth bader ginsberg costume came to me.

that brings me to a thought i’ve been having about millenial albums-due to my disc drive being busted in my computer, i’ve been listening to music in the old skool way of getting cds and bumping them over and over. i’ve found that i’ve fallen in love with albums in this way, but once they’re in the ipod, i’m just *meh. or they’re on a very slow burn. there’s no in-between-and perhaps this is a bigger statement on my relationship to relationships in general, and how i’ve always been lived in the moment, because i’ve been insecure of its disappearance. (sigh).

regardless, bj the chicago kid has been my obsession lately:

and so it would seem that jesus is still walking in chicago…..