A Shadow Across My Heart

When we moved to Calgary I was 8 years old. We moved onto a street just up from our elementary school and I remember being excited that we had a back alley. 

Back alley’s are perfect for ball hockey.

After getting a net and playing a few games our neighbour came out. His sons had grown up and didn’t have a need for their old ball hockey sticks, so he asked if we would like them. 

At 8 years old, this was like winning the friggen lottery.

As the years went by we came to know our neighbours much better. We would look after their dog for short stints, house sit when needed and even call an ambulance when working in the garage took a wrong turn. 

Once we moved out talking with the neighbours only ever came at family BBQ’s and was always across the fence chatting deck-to-deck. But this was still great. I mean what more can you really ask for out of your neighbours these days then the ability to have a genuine conversation?

When you meet such caring, genuine, nice people at such a young age, it’s just a given that they will always be there. 

But they’re not. Today a shadow has crossed my heart and we’ve lost a truly wonderful man. 


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My New Life

Now that I have actually started I feel I can safely announce what a lot of you already knew. 

I have made a life changing decision to become a plumber. 

This was not a decision made lightly, or without a great deal of thought. I went to school to be a journalist. I’ve worked since then as a writer, in communications as well as in marketing. After months of job searching one of my best friends approached me with the idea of becoming his apprentice.

My first reaction was to laugh. 

Over my life I have done a lot of labour jobs, and worked a great deal with my hands, but I’ve never been the guy that HAS to work with his hands, or that builds things in his spare time. I’ve continually had the motto of convenience over cost, and it’s always been more convenient to pay someone to do work that needed to be done.

As I thought more and more about it however, it became increasingly obvious that a career in the trades gives me exactly what I’ve been looking for. 

I don’t have to work at a desk, there’s long term job stability, there’s the opportunity to work independently, and let’s not forget that (eventually) the money can be damn good. Add to that the chance to work with a great friend day-in and day-out and there were way more upsides then downsides. 

So here I am, 30 years old and starting all over again. The weird thing is, I’m not the only one. In fact, there are an increasing amount of our generation that are changing careers again and again. Sometimes it’s by choice but often we do it because we are forced to. Luckily we’re adaptable. 

I’m looking forward to my new career and the potential opportunities it will afford Jane and I. Now to get to work on my plumbers crack.

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I think a lot about death. At least it seems like a lot. Maybe it’s a normal amount.

I wouldn’t say I’m scared by it. I mean sure, I don’t want to die, but death IS so what’s the point in fearing it?

My thoughts lately have been focused on sympathy.

Sympathy is something very often associated with death. People send you sympathy cards, send their sympathy. Give you sympathy. And you know what, it’s funny, sympathy is something I often expected from people. In the depths of my mind it’s something I demanded, then once I had it I detested it.


Just the word itself invokes anger in me. I don’t really know why.

I guess because in my mind sympathy is directly related to pity. I don’t want pity, I never wanted pity. To me the two are so easily combined, so much so that in my head they’ve come to mean the same thing. This has done some strange things. Now when I hear of a death in someones family – whether it be an aged member or a tragic loss – I don’t sympathize with them. I don’t offer them sympathy.

Which as I type just seems awful, but it’s true.

I don’t ever offer sympathy to someone. I tell them I’m sorry. I say how awful that is. But I don’t offer them sympathy, instead in my head I open a door. In my head I welcome them to a club that I feel we now belong in. Not everyone is in the club, and certainly there are lots of people that wouldn’t even understand it. But if you’ve lost someone, in my head, I welcome you to the club. On some level I feel we are now more able to understand each other. I attach a silent bond between us, but one that doesn’t include my sympathy, just my understanding.

Sometimes I worry about what sort of a person that makes me.

Most of the time I don’t care.

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Me + Fashion = Reeeeaaalllllyyyy??

Admittedly it has been a while since I’ve posted on this blog. This is due in large fact to the amount of work I’ve been doing over at http://simplevines.com. If you haven’t checked it out, please do, I’d really appreciate it!

That being said, this was well worth a post.

Simplevines recently had a guest post written from emily-michelle. She loved it so much she decided to write a fashion blog post about yours truly. Trust me, know one was more surprised then me.

You can check the post out here or by visiting http://www.emily-michelle.com

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Check it out!

For those of you I haven’t already pestered to check it out, thought I’d let you know that my sister and I have started a new blog called Simple Vines. It’s a wine review blog with simple reviews written to entertain. Check out the blog, and visit us on our various social media sites!





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2012 In Review

It’s time to be reflective of my past year, and optimistic for my new year. 2012 was a year of incredible highs and incredible lows. This blog focused a lot on the low parts, but not so much on the high notes. In September I married my best friend, and went on an amazing honeymoon that saw us staying in a castle and playing with monkeys. I can’t complain about that.

My hopes for 2013 are simple. I’d like my life to be far less of a roller coaster ride, and a little more of a cruise on an open highway. Simpler, less chaotic and fulfilling.

I don’t think that’s asking too much.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog. Check it out if you’re so inclined.

Happy New Year friends. Be good to each other.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 4,600 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 8 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

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