soundtrack to a breakup

februarie 25, 2011

chic gamine – les echos


manu chao&tonino carotone – me cago en el amor


moriarty – jimmy


love is in the air

februarie 14, 2011

this pretty song was playing in a boutique in my neighbourhood where i stop frequently to visit the dresses i can`t afford. consequently, this is all that`s in my head today.

it`s still snowing i think (it did the whole day, but at some point it`s supposed to turn into rain). i have pineapple crumble in the oven, i`m just saying it because it sounds good. i won`t tell you how it tasted. and i`m reading julian barnes!!! after years and years and years i dared get close to `arthur and george`- and guess what, it`s good. well in the quaint and well-raised julian barnes way, but i`m pleased.

so i visited the old-skool-craft-fair for st. valentin`s today, & st urbain and st viateur. smaller than i had thought (duh, it was in the basement of the big church). lovely things that were too expensive for me:  various cards and prints with/of montreal places; felt flower necklaces and hairbands (sonia z., you could so start a business!!); knit jewelry, i.e. mostly hairpins and brooches. i was looking for a toy-rabbit but i see there`s not much chance of finding one in good time. anyway, i bought a small button – a sketch of 2 ppl in cosmonaut gear, embraced/kissing while floating in space (huh there are specks i`m assuming are stars), with cute oxygen tanks and all. yeah count on me to overlap the romantic meaning of a phrase with a literal cynical or whatever reading of it.

anything is a metaphor for my love life. also i can`t wait to have a dog: i`m naming him cosmos.

ok, books:

decembrie 31, 2010

this is the last post this year. verrry rushed. just because i used to do it, and i don`t want to really stop. books i read this year, which meant something to me. huh there aren`t many, so i should be done in time to not be late for work (also: i have a cake in the oven. literally, alright)

– linda svendsen, `marine life`.

– agota kristof, `le grand cahier` (i read this in french. it`s an awesome book to get started into french with.)

– sherman alexie: i`m on a roll of reading everything i can find by him, with highs and lows.

– joyce maynard – `at home in the world`- talking about non-fiction. i don`t even know whether liking the book means i`m taking her side. it`s just one of those things that get to me, and make me think of more stuff.

– lorrie moore – `a gate at the stairs` – i was taken by this book in a totally inexplicable way. i realize i should probably have hated it all: the vagueness, the pretension, the persistence of things-that-have-nothing-to-do with me as topics (see what a sophisticated reader i am or have become), but no: i loved it. it pushed a button, it touched something in me, and i`m a bit pissed i haven`t yet figured out how that works.

– gary shteyngart – `absurdistan` – so annoying at times, so funny and etc, laughing-crying – relating at others.

– aleksandar hemon – `love and obstacles`. i`ve kind of decided now that i want to be a. hemon when i grow up. yes it has to do with the eastern european perspective, why do you ask?

and then, there are some blogs i loved. two of my favourites of this autumn/winter:

i.e. sady doyle, to whose level of feminism i aspire.

i.e. tavi gevinson, who writes about fashion-from-salvation-army, with pictures – and is 14. she would hate that her age is once again mentioned as focus, but okay. i`m in a hurry.

my cake is done. it`s too sweet, and i still burned the bottom a bit.

non-russian-orthodox christmas week music

decembrie 30, 2010

din preaplinul inimii mele 🙂

nautilus pompilius (‘breath’):

I wake in cold sweat/I wake in a nightmarish haze/As if our house has been flooded by water/And we’re the only ones left alive/And that above us lie kilometres of water/And that above us whales beat their tails/And there’s not enough oxygen for both of us/I lie in the darkness

Listening to our breathing/I listen to our breathing/I had never thought before/That you and I share/The same breath/Breath

I try to forget to breathe/To give you even a minute/Of that gas, that we took for granted/But you’re sleeping and don’t know/That above us lie kilometres of water/And that above us whales beat their tails/And there’s not enough oxygen for both of us/I lie in the darkness

Listening to our breathing/I listen to our breathing/I had never thought before/That you and I share/The same breath



DDT (‘rain’):

akvarium (!!! ‘can’t take my eyes off you’)

kino (‘night’)

my music 2010 (3): love alone is not enough

decembrie 15, 2010

27. karine polwart – i`m gonna do it all

28. i love monsters – spine

29. beach house – zebra

30. the moondoggies – changing

31. arcade fire – we used to wait

32. neko case – this tornado loves you

33. neko case – people got a lotta nerve

34. radio radio – jacuzzi

35. wilco – you and i

36. yeasayer – 2080

37. moist – silver

38. arcade fire – ready to start

39. alfa rococo – plus rien a faire

40. the scarlet ending – exactly what you want

41. tired pony – dead american writers

icitte au quebec y fait pas froid, y fait frette

decembrie 11, 2010

…not really. i mean it was cold, it was – 16 at one point, but i couldn’t really feel it. all this week i was experimenting with the following important aspects:

– leather coat vs. winter coat. ok, so i switched to the winter coat. advantage, i can wear just one normal sweater under it, instead of having to put on 3 layers. while outside, i walk like a penguin, but who cares.

– nice boots ( suede-y, okay?) that i was wearing every day and with everything, vs. chunky, pretty old boots that i’ve had ever since cluj. i’m still wearing the nice ones, hoping i can wash the salt lines out – and keeping the more serious ones for more serious times.

– leg warmers!!! now this is for real. (do you remember the poor blue things i bought one winter 5 ys ago? that was acknowledged pretence. fingerless gloves to mimic…cuteness, and a bright blue stocking layer to showcase my shins. they were also meant to make me into someone else. i’ve kept believing in magic for very long.) but my current leg warmers were with me in the storm, to help keep knee-high snow out of my jeans. what more could one wish for from a garment?

i’m giving you some music because this is boring:

what was i saying?:)

ah. woolly socks. double socks. everything in bright colours, because – true facts – this helps warm you up. it’s the same trick as nice-lingerie-makes-you-feel-sexy-even-if-no-one-sees-it.

yes, so i was talking about cold and i get to lingerie. c’est comme ca l’hiver dans la ville que j’aime.


niveau cinq, here we are

mai 29, 2010

1. i’ve vaguely planned to skip class one night. but i find myself heading there from work, by inertia – even this thursday, when i was running late (one of the cooks had an accident, it was a slightly hectic afternoon even for a thursday, people running around like headless chicken) i got out of the forum after 5.30, and…where was i gonna go? i had obvious answers, less obvious ones, i had a bit of a pressure to write at the back of my mind…could have walked in the park, or got a sorbet/coffee in a cafe and tried to write…but then i went to the metro stop. oblivious. book in hand.

2. things i do/have done during class: writing cards. reading the newspaper/book. rereading a draft. looking up words in the dictionary. drinking coffee – i can’t go through 4 hours without coffee. i can’t go through a thick 4hour wall of ANYTHING without a coffee probably. but mostly, when i come to think of it, in all honesty, i primarily do this: speak french with people. do exercises in french. i think the goals are being met. i’ve been a member of the school system for so long, it’s with relief that i plunge into the slavery – there’s this class to go to. things will add up in time. i’m going.

3. and yes, i am the best in my class, at least technically. one explanation for this might be that i asked to be placed one level below? maybe but who cares. as long as i don’t score 100% on grammar and dictation for this level, and especially speaking-wise, as long as there are people in my class more fluent and more at ease with the language than me, even with erreurs – i am in the right place. of course i have to be aware of, and try to get amusedly detached from, my competitive obsession. it’s… never come in useful, except for massaging my ego for 2,5 seconds and then immediately awakening me to shame. nobody cares that you can spell almost correctly, carmen.

4. on niveau 5 we still have textbooks, and my classmates mostly know eachother already because some have been together through levels 1-4. so it’s a classic ‘new kid in class’ scenario. except they’re not kids. and this is not school-school. it’s the, honestly, hard school of living, etc. people come to classes from work. people work making shoes, making blinds for windows, cooking, making wrappings for presents, driving moving vans. people yell at each other in spanish over desks. people complain, ask and answer basic questions, are kind to each other, help you change your banknote, keep you a spot in the coffee line. offer you popcorn. save handouts for you. i’ve never felt unwelcome or uneasy here – i’ve felt at points overwhelmingly sad.

5. before april ’10, i hadn’t felt an immigrant in canada. go figure, i actually, legally, am not : i’m an immigrant wannabe, at most. but the wannabe part is important.

6. my french school is not everything i’d wanted, not what i’d dreamed. the first two days i was choked with fury against the anglos…for being so blatantly absent. componence of my class: 90% hispanic. one russian girl. one neo-zeelander who came here to be with her quebecois boyfriend. (after one month of classes, and walking home with her because we live close, i’ve still NEVER heard this girl, caro, speak english. in this sense, maybe my french school IS  what i’d dreamed.) somebody suggested that maybe francization is only for non-canadians, but it can’t be true, because my friend sonia z. took these classes 4?5? ys ago. it’s that they can’t be bothered. honestly.

7. we speak french at breaks. and after classes. if i met one of them in the street, hell if i met one of them in calgary, we’d speak french. it’s like swimming and then realizing if you tried to touch the ground now you’d drown. the conversational things i found out about these people, i got them through our mutually imperfect french. some of them don’t even have the english as a possible crutch. THAT is brave. working as a dishwasher when you have a whole load of degrees is not brave. i repeat myself.

8. so, no love and gushing passion, but maybe i am past that age after all. i respect my francization course, admire how it’s helping people, like and admire and respect my classmates, and try to work with it in my way. boring, i know. my prof said in about one year , if i get the pesky equivalences solved, i could teach french in a centre like this. they need teachers – and i can understand why.