Friday, June 12, 2009

topics for the jar

MLou arrives later today for another one of our whirlwind project (this time painting) and catch up weekends. Hooray ! My house is a wreck - I say that as if that's an unusual occurence ... and sadly it's pretty much the norm. Happily ... I've become pretty comfortable allowing her witness to my wreckage in all it's glory and these last few visits I've felt little or no pressure to go wild (or should I say to attempt to go wild). Because when it comes to areas of domestic engineering I can guarantee you - no wildness ever occurs at this house. I haven't even thought too much about food (much more my forté in domestic issues) and/or what we'll eat as we paint and chat, chat & paint and chat some more. I'm hoping les menu items will hit me sometime in the few hours left this morning before the grocery store opens. I did round up a bunch of paint chips yesterday and I will stand in good bright daylight this morning and soundly make that creamy white decision. I'll take stock of les painting supplies, I'll make a few lists (with categories and some sub categories). I'll see if I can't find where Madam Vacuum has been hiding and I'll be busy until MLou's chariot arrives near evening.

This morning as I sipped my first cup of coffee dans la nest of down and flannel I was thinking if 29 Black Street was a Bed & Breakfast (I shudder at the thought) I would call it A Hair of the Cat ... by the Sea. I'm sure we'll go through at least one vacuum bag today.

MLou and I have much in common. We're both designers, we met 20 years ago at art college and have been friends since, we have similar tastes, like personalities but our biggest claim to fame when it comes to our friendship is our ability to chat endlessly, effortlessly, intensely and always equally - no one person dominating the conversation. We'll drift away, far, far away many times from the original topic- yet miraculously upon looking at each other puzzled with that how did we get way out here ? look, one of us will always see the landmark, way off in the distance and row us back to where we began only to have us set off again for some other far away, yet distantly related sub, sub topic. We'll sail around completely engrossed for hours and hours on end in a sea of tres stimulating and always interesting conversation - it is awe inspiring and a thing to behold, much needed food for my soul plus we can and do manage all this chatting while multi -tasking (bonus), all while we paint, or walk, or hike or sit at my kitchen table at meal times.

I save up topics of conversation for her visits, topics too big and drawn out for our weekly phone chats. I'll sigh and say to her I think that's one for the jar. Originally joking that I would write all these topics and items down on slips of paper, as I think of them so as not to forget them, and place them in the jar for safekeeping until her next visit. Then when she arrives she can do the honours, pull a slip out of les jar, read it out loud and off to the races we'll go.

I have my jar and she has her social world/family tree - portable flip chart on wheels with pocket laser pointer. She married into a huge family. Her husband L. comes from one of those raucous, famous in these parts (or infamous), very large families (9 children) from Cape Breton (much like Newfoundland considered by many to still be it's own nation). Considering the spouses of these 9 siblings of L's, the children of etc ... they have formed their own unique and large tribe, a vast and complicated category all of it's own - les In Laws (and sub in-laws). She also is a very social girl compared to me, she has a very busy graphic design business with plenty o' corporate-esqe clients and friends galore in her big city life. So when she says to me, mid conversation and then Helen said. I tilt my head, a sign of confusion and she'll wheel out the imaginary chart, flip past the several pages devoted to in-laws and sub in-laws to the section covering friends and associates, and will point (avec les pocket laser pointer) to the head shot and byline (claim to fame or essence of said person found underneath the head shot) and I will nod my head. ohhhhh, Helen ... OK carry on .... it's so much fun. Sometimes I try to guess - without the chart and always feel very pleased with myself when I get it right and I'm able to recite the byline/essence without the head shot.

If you made it this far ... please accept my apologies for the tres long & wordy post. I really try very hard to keep my posts to a paragraph or two as I myself can't bear to read "way too long posts" - just too many blogs to visit and much too little time. If you've skimmed to here ... I don't blame you at all. Wink.

Off to the land of Blue Skies and ready that list - les plan of action.


  1. Did you enter the wine label contest?

    I'm sure this will be a topic of convo, dog breeds and gullible Americans.

  2. It all sounds like delightful "whistling while you work" stuff! Have a great weekend and get that paint job finished up in short order!

  3. Oh, girlfriends are the best, best, BEST!!!!! (I think that should be a song). Have fun, and solve the world's problems for us.

  4. Sadly I did not enter the wine label contest. I did brainstorm for days trying to come with a brilliant idea ... and nothing came to me. I'm disappointed but can now throw my vote behind Chickory's most excellent surfin'Trout.

    And ahhh yes the gullible (although we have used a different word) American have no idea what a popular topic that is to we Canadians. Here's a link from one of our most loved weekly comedy shows - the Mercer Report. Sorry for the tres shitty video quality but content's a hoot !

  5. what? you skim long posts? hmmmm.... I'm happy to read 'em if they are interesting...

    29 Black Street would be a great name for a label....

    just choose any cream and slap it on... you will be gone anyway.....

    we finally have blue skies again (literally) ... and lovely warmer days...the birds are chirurping away out there ...all windows flung open ..... ahhhhhh ...... finally.......

  6. Dare I ask what this other word could be...sigh, guess I better go to the video.

  7. OK watched the video and frankly I'm shocked that they could find that many people who knew who their governor was.

  8. B. Shamu I mean no offense to you and your kind ... but ya gotta admit ...

    I'll say no more. Watch the video.
    Congratulations Canada on your

    You make me laugh - laughing's good.
    legalizing VCR's - tee hee.
    So earnest, and oh so mean Rick.

  9. A jar full of conversations. I like that idea. I think I will start a jar for myself, to remind me of all the spur of the moment fabulous ideas I have then forget after something else comes to my attention.
    Have a fun, productive weekend!

  10. Susan...You are a blessed woman!
    MLou and the les gang...a house by the sea!I really enjoyed your tres long post!! :D

  11. Firstly, I just love the jar idea and secondly, I never "skim" through your posts. They are always delightful... Have a wonderful weekend and visit with your friend!

  12. Well guess what, Susan? I read the whole entire thing--word for word AND the linked post too! (DO I get one of your delicious treats for that? :) )

    A chart?! I've never heard of anyone actually creating a real live chart to keep friends on track for their family! (Smart idea if that big.) It's probably even nicely arranged, no less, MLou being a designer too and so on. Boy, her social circle if the other end to yours, no? It's lovely that you two are still so connected decades later.

    There is nothing like a godo friend to chat away with for hours on end but to multi-task too is a particularly lovely bonus.

    Enjoy. Can't wait to read how it goes. the photo, btw.


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