Suzy Snapper
Monday, July 31, 2006
Another Kind Of Lethal Weapon
So Mel Gibson is entering rehab after his shameful display of abusive public drunkenness and driving while impaired.

It occurs to me that he must be one hell of an actor if the characters he plays on screen are so completely different from his real life personna.

Not much of a Braveheart. William Wallace would not be proud.

The funny thing is this is not really news. There have been many signs over the years, little hints to the 'other side' of Mel.

I remember a story of his antics back when he was in Vancouver filming Bird On A Wire,. He came with his family to see a movie at a local movie theatre. My friend was working the ticket booth and she was suprised when he chided his wife for walking beside him...making her take two steps behind.

The most disappointing thing though is his latest rant cannot be fully excused away by a night out with the bottle. One doesn't immediately become an anti-semite when inebriated. Stupid, yes. Mouthy, yes. But racial and cultural epithets come from a much darker place.

This post says it best though - Mel Gibson R.I.P.
Five Things
Because I'm bored at work today.

Five things in my purse:
1. Business cards
2. Migraine medicine
3. A bunch of receipts chucked in
4. Cell Phone
5. Camera Film

Five things in my refrigerator
1. Cranberry Juice
2. Bernaise Sauce (that really should be tossed by now!)
3. Zucchini
4. Wasabi
5. Coke

Five things in my closet
1. Clothes to go to good will
2. Lots of SHOES
3. Family history pictures (several boxes!)
4. Air Mattress
5. The slippers my grandmother made me when I was 8 (and yes they still fit, albeit snug)

Five things in my car
1. I-Pod
2. Emergency/Earthquake kit
3. Binoculars (yes, they really should come out now, I've been back from camping a month!)
4. Barbeque Lighter
5. Various Mickey Mouse antenna balls

It was time for a reinvention of sorts. I was hating my hair, especially after a recent comment from my nephew-in-law that it was a bit mullet-like. Given the fact that he said that after I'd just exited a rapidly flowing river after falling out of my inner tube a few times, I suspect it isn't always the case. However, I still needed a little pick me up.

So Saturday, 3 hours in the chair, and this is the result. It gave me a good chance to use my new tripod and remote control on the camera as well. The fun part is staring into the camera trying to put on a non-fake smile.

Saturday night was an interesting adventure. My parents, my brother and his wife, her sister and husband went to the Professional Bull Riding competition. This is a new thing to the area and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. There is so much more to this type of sport than just holding on for 8 seconds.

We ended up sitting beside two of the rider's wives, which made it a little more interesting. I chatted with them and even held their baby as they videotaped their husband's ride. It makes it more real, when you realize that this is their income and not just for entertainment.

Unfortunately, it was not a smooth performance and one rider was injured seriously when a bull stomped on him after throwing him in an awkward position. He was removed on a spinal board, with a suspected broken back. I said to the girl beside me, 'Do you know him?' and she looked at me with tears in her eyes, 'Yes, we grew up together'. I haven't been able to find anything online about how he is but I'm hoping that it looked worse than it was.

Sunday was a bit of a stormy day. I woke up to a thunderstorm so close that it was rattling the windows. Unfortunately, in my haze, I was dreaming that I was in a bomb shelter in Israel and the bombs were exploding at my feet. That's what happens when I watch a little too much CNN before bed. Once I realized it was a storm, I got up and tried to take pictures but unfortunately, the lightening was just not cooperating.

And with that, it's time to get some work done here. Have a great week, everyone!
Thursday, July 27, 2006
Which Superhero Are You?
Your results:
You are Spider-Man
Wonder Woman
Green Lantern
The Flash
Iron Man
You are intelligent, witty,
a bit geeky and have great
power and responsibility.

Click here to take the Superhero Personality Quiz

Hattip to Ian.
Not exactly what I would expect
'What" will your obituary say?' at
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
The Mouth of Babes
'Papa', she said with a sigh, 'I can see the WHOLE world from here'
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
A contemplative day
Is that even a word? Not sure, but this is my blog and if I want to make up words, I will.

First off, thank you all for the kind words with my rough week last week. Yes, I've seen the doctor. And we had a great heart-to-heart. I am not so good at putting things down on the table, and especially with pain, I try and bury it. As soon as the pain gets a little better, I forget it. The trouble is, if it's mapped and you realize that 20 out of the last 30 days were painful ones, that method is not a good one. So, I've had a battery of blood tests done and on August 21, I will go to the hospital for a slightly more invasive test.

Devon, thank you for the comment about non-Western medicines. I am very intrigued by the idea but am not sure how to find a good practitioner. I have heard of quite a few bad experiences and charlatans out there, and am a little concerned given my past history of ending up in the hospital when things went wrong to trust someone who hasn't had knowledge of the last few years. But having said that, I actually have put some feelers out and we'll see what comes of it.

Now, today. I am a sucker for remembering dates and numbers, so I knew I'd be having an introspective moment or two today.

It's July 25. 2 years ago, I was in Hawaii and met someone who would change my life. NavyBoy. And when I say change, not all change is positive but that meeting was a catalyst for many changes in my life. While he was not exactly what I expected, nor was what we had, I am very glad our paths did meet.

In the last two years, I was given the opportunity to become very involved from a personal level the support involved in the military. I now know the feeling of having a loved one go off to a war zone and to worry every day. To take that worry and build on it, so that it doesn't cripple but makes one stronger. Now, when I hear stories about the military and their families, it holds much more meaning.

It gave me the opportunity to learn about certain conflicts, certain ideals and generally broaden my horizons. It also gave me the impetus to begin blogging. It allowed me to strengthen my opinions, my choices and my perspective. Some I allowed to become public, and some I did not.

When I learned more of the situation that NavyBoy was in, and also realizing that it was not a situation I wanted to be part of, I learned that was ok too. I don't regret one second, nor wish it didn't happen.

Do we talk still? Surprisingly, yes. Not as often as we did, mind you, but we do. He is back home stateside now. Once the rose coloured glasses came off, I saw him in a different light. He is a dreamer and doesn't really live in reality. Always looking for the easy win, the quick buck, the newest adventure. Not conducive to a family life, and I now understand why he ended up in the situation he is. And for the record, he is now officially divorced - not that it has any bearing on our relationship.

He is still my friend. Should he be? Many say no. But my friendships are lifelong. I speak to all my ex-boyfriends and it is very rare indeed for someone to truly leave my life. I feel he will be in my life to some degree for a long time to come, but there are limits.

His emails often are filled with plans to come to see me. To make everything right. To right all the wrongs and deceptions of the last two years. But I know that's all just talk. It's a nice story, nice words but that's all they are. My heart left once the complete story was out in the open. We will always be friends, but from afar.

I am so glad I met him two years ago today, for it opened up a whole new world to me. It gave me insight and confidence, but it also gave me a lesson in trust. Our meeting had a strong purpose and I'm grateful for that.
Thursday, July 20, 2006
Heading up
A little better today. To be honest, there's a little more going on medically than I want to lend credence to. The migraines are a complication of endometriosis.

I have a very hard time accepting that diagnosis. It brings up a whole lot of other issues that I really don't want to deal with. The last comment from the doctor regarding removing the offending bits has quieted me up and I've not mentioend the worsening symptoms since. However, given that Tuesday was beyond words, I have decided to put my fears aside and hit this head on. I made an appointment today, and will see her - notes in hand - this evening. Let's just hope she doesn't dismiss me.

Interesting quote in my daytimer today.

'Returning violence for violence multiplies violence. Adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars...hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that.'
- Martin Luther King Jr.

Very appropo for these times, I think.
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
I wish my health wouldn't interfere so much with my life. Ugh.

I had to call in sick today. First time at the new job. I have been fighting a migraine for a good week now, but this morning, upon waking up and having tingles in the side of my face and blurred vision, I knew it was going to be a bit worse than I can take.

I hate giving in.

But it's now 9:20pm. I can not tell you much of what happened today, except to think several times that I should be seeking stronger medical care than what I had at home. Unfortunately, the fun of living alone is that you don't want to make that call. Besides, hospitals suck. Especially when you have a migraine. Loud, bright and doctors asking a whole bunch of silly questions and in the end, all you get is a little more pain medication and sent home. Not worth it, in the long run.

Let's hope tomorrow is a better one.

In the meantime, I leave you with a picture I took last night during an evening walk for some fresh air. I live in a truly beautiful place.

Monday, July 17, 2006
The World Today
It's a sad state of affairs in the world today. Being a news junkie, I can usually gauge the tensions by how much it affects my thought patterns. For the first time since the tsunami during Boxing Week 2004, I find myself waking up in the night and wondering what the latest news is.

My friend lives in Jerusalem. He puts on a brave face, rarely showing stress over the environment he resides. His emails are of what we all concern ourselves with. Chosing a new home, his family's day to day health, work stress and the latest movie premiere. Normal existence. But those are changing now. There is an edge to every message. Today, upon hearing that a suicide bomber attempted to enter his work building but was mercifully caught before he could do any damage, he finally sounded scared. He makes this latest crisis real to me. A funny, gregarious guy who taught us Hebrew songs while sipping Israeli wine on a British train on the way to Cambridge.

Then I think of the little Lebanese cafe I love here in Vancouver. Konafa to die for. Mmmm...I can taste it right now. I had a scallop-saffron dish there once that was beyond anything describable. The people who own that cafe are such friendly, vibrant folks. A Dad, Mom, son and two daughters. Always with a gleam in their eye and a story to tell. Their son, an incurable flirt, will often fall over himself trying to chat with my Iranian friend who I often dine with. He'll use the worst pick up lines...'Didn't I see you in the Tripoli market last May?' How is their family? Are they caught up in this?

These are the faces, the people of this crisis. They hurt. They bleed. They're people, just like us, who happen to be born in a place that is much more complicated than the one we in North America know.

This morning, I was lamenting on how sad this was when a coworker said the most shocking thing.

'Maybe if World War 2 had ended differently, we wouldn't have to worry about this today. If only Germany had finished it's job'.

What the hell kind of mind even thinks that? It makes me sick. I looked at him in pure digust, not daring to open my mouth to what I wanted to say.

He continued. 'Oh, sorry, are you Jewish?'

'No', I sputtered, 'But I am human'.

I fear for a world who has people in it that actually think this way though. Sadly, I know he's not alone.
Monday, July 10, 2006
The Bathtub and More
Last weekend, we had the absolute delight of taking it back a few paces to remember what's truly

My brother has a friend who lives in a small town about 3 hours from here. Water is on a well, and silly things like radios and television are what people worry about 'on the coast'. They own a 5 acre property on a small lake outside of Princeton, in the interior of BC.

The bathtub, which I took the picture of Little Dude in is to the right. Filled with a hose, and a fire lit underneath to warm the water. Once it's warm enough, the fire is put out (much to the thankfulness of Ms. Thang who had visions of being a boiled crab!). As the sun sets over the lake, there is not a more beautiful place around.

It was a very special weekend for other reasons too. For the first time ever, we had my parents join us on the trip. Because of health issues, or timing, it has never happened before. My parents were avid travellers in their RV after my Dad retired. They would drive across the country in a heartbeat and the tales of their adventures were always fodder for many a conversation. But they have aged a lot in the last few years.

The turning point to us was when they were involved in a head-on collision in 2000. An Australian driver, a little jetlagged at the wheel forgot briefly what side to drive on and slammed into them. I will never forget that phonecall. 'I'm in the back on an ambulance. I don't know where your Dad is'. Thankfully, they were not seriously injured...although both had several operations to correct injuries. Nothing was ever the same since and it sped the time up at least a decade. Last year, in a very bittersweet moment, they handed the keys to the motorhome to my brother...effectively passing the torch to him.

Last weekend, however, we convinced them to make the trip. The hospital was only 20 minutes away if needed (thankfully wasn't) and my brother and his wife slept in the house, giving my parents one last time in the motorhome. It nearly broke my heart to hear my Dad say to my Mom, after she was lamenting she couldn't find a certain dish, 'This isn't yours anymore, Mama'.

Sadness and melancholy aside, it was a priceless weekend. The kids were a blast, adding to the moments and finding beauty in the most mundane things. We sat around the campfire, listening to the stories of trips past. We played Scrabble until the wee hours by lantern. (And can anyone tell me why a singular 'vying' is vie and not vy!? I would have WON!)

It was in a word...unforgettable. In a world full of stress and drama, it was just the break we all needed to remember what was truly important.

And in other news, if you build it, they will come. (I hope!)
More memories

At first, Ms Thang was very nervous about the 'bear that died in the house', but once we convinced her the skin wouldn't hurt her, she was quite happy. That was until her Dad decided to animate the situation!

And if there was any doubt about how much these children bring our family together, just look below.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

More later on what was a fabulous weekend...but in the meantime, here's a picture of the Little Dude that I just love.

Sometimes, they come out even better than you can hope for.

And yes, it's an outdoor bathtub. No indoor plumbing, so the tub's filled up with hosewater, and a little fire set underneath to warm it up. Once it's nice and toasty, the fire's put out and it's a beautiful little setting overlooking the lake.
Monday, July 03, 2006
What Does Your Birthday Mean?
Your Birthdate: September 22

You tend to be understated and under appreciated.
You have a hidden force to do amazing things, doing them your own way.
People may see you as strange and shy, but they know little.
Your unconventional ways have more power than they (and even you) know.

Your strength: Standing up for what you know is true

Your weakness: You tend to be picky and rigid

Your power color: Silver

Your power symbol: Square

Your power month: April

Vancouver, British Columbia
A patriotic Canadian full of visions of a better Canada, random thoughts and a lot of hot air. Who am I? A struggling writer and photographer trapped in a corporate buyer's body. Steel shopping by day, and freeflowing prose by night. One day I hope to have the nights become my days, but am intimidated by the sheer amount of people who share my dream. So I read. A lot. I learn. A lot. I push myself. A lot. The world is a small place, and getting smaller every day. I'm proud to have friends in every corner of the earth, and abide by the old adage that there are no strangers, only friends we haven't met yet.
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