The Best Rainy Day Blog Entry Ever

Lately, a thought has been swirling around my head like fine brandy in a snifter; something Ang Hold brought up at our meal at the Havana on Friday. See, she’s taking a counseling course and one of the things discussed was “when to hug and when not to hug a person you’re counseling.” Personal space/invisible barriers were brought up. I have a personal barrier – you’ve probably experienced it. Ang detected my barrier and mentioned that she simply ignores it – pushes past that shit, if you will. And dog bless her for that: I wish more people would. Lots of my friends have these same barriers, and while I would like to say that I’ve observed that it’s more prevalent in my male friends that may not be an objective observation since a) most of them are straight (and yes, I’m a male) and/or b) that may just be feedback from my invisible barrier. This may be complete applesauce but what’s said is said. (Don’t bother pointing out the backspace button, I’m obstinate.)

I wonder if my personal hangups, which Ang has such a knack for kicking over like godzilla would a stiff British Embassy, have ever made people feel less welcome than I’d like. Have my hangups sucked the warmth from a room, or unduly created vacuum in conversation? Probably. Well, if I can say so without sounding like a hippy frolicking naked at Burning Man, the next time you detect my invisible barrier radiating out, do me a favour and ignore it.

And this leads me to another topic….

Remember that episode of Star Trek: the Next Generation where Wesley is taking his Starfleet entrance exam onboard Enterprise, and part of the test is bumping into that guy whose culture finds politeness offensive? Well, I always admired that guy. I don’t really find politeness offensive per se, but there are certain people who put way too much energy into tiptoeing around life in the +2 Slippers of Etiquette. Being considerate and being polite are two different things, in fact sometimes they are polar opposites. It’s important to know the difference. If I’m talking on the phone, don’t ask me if you can have a glass of water: just have a glass of water. In fact while I’ve got you here, let me say that if it weren’t for the fact that some of the food in my home is not mine, help yourself to anything you fancy. Come in, sit down, put your feet up. Put your coat wherever you’d like. You don’t have to take your shoes off. If you want a blanket, they’re in the closet next to my bedroom. Cups are above the sink (there’s no cupboard doors so you can see for yourself), forks and spoons in the drawer to the left, and there’s cold filtered water in the fridge. Yes, of course you can use my telephone–if you want some privacy, there’s one in my room. I don’t need you to announce that you’re going to use the bathroom. Come and sit beside me. Grab as many candies out of my hand as you like. The kettle’s probably already on the stove. Tell me to go get the specific movie or cartoon you’d like to see. I appreciate certainty. Wishy-washyness is the enemy. I prefer the efficiency of aggressiveness; of forwardness. Do I have something you want? Take first, ask questions later. Don’t worry, if I have a problem with anything, I’ll let you know–that’s the Toren guarantee. It makes me feel warm when my friends seem comfortable around me. I strive for that, but it can’t be that easy with these invisible barriers up all the time. I am so fed up with that extra half hour spent in the video store or outside the movie theater second-guessing whether or not the other person actually wants to see that movie, or if they agreed only out of politeness. Stinking, rude politeness!

On to the boring crap

Today was the last day of the play. It’s over. It went well. We broke even, which for an original play with a cast of mostly neophytes (this was my first play outside of a 3 month drama class in grade 8) with no press to speak of, is fantastic. I enjoyed it, it was a lot of fun. I don’t want to make a career out of it though. It is a huge investment of time and energy, and while there is a payoff in terms of…whatever you want to call it…artistic satisfaction, I can’t imagine it paying the bills. Voiceover, on the other hand, I can really get behind: it doesn’t matter what you look like; time commitment is typically a half day and then you’re done; the money is good. Plus I love cartoons and video games, and being part of that makes me happy.

On the way to that last show I bumped into Ed & Janet. Neither of them had umbrellas. Ed updated me on what’s going on with Graveyard: he now has a distribution deal for the DVDs. Then I bumped into Yvonne and Jim strolling down Commercial Drive in the rain. They both had umbrellas. After the play, Steve (the tall guy in the play who played Joe Ferris) had the wrap party at his house. I’m fixing to borrow his book Cradle to Cradle – it looks like it will make me think. All of the actors chipped in to get the director, Dave, a gift certificate to some fancy restaurant. There was a vegetable tray and a tray of tiny sandwiches, and yummy lime tortilla chips. Somebody’s guest started to get a little too boisterous on the wine and that’s when I hit the road.

About a Boycott

Do you want to live in a world where the studios release movies a chunk at a time and charge you full price for each chunk? If so, support the new Tarantino flick Kill Bill. I will not. Miramax decided for us that it was not in our best interests to sit through a 3 hour movie, and so they cut the film in twain, releasing the installments several months apart. I have a word for that, and it rhymes with fullshit. I don’t consider myself a reactionary boycott-type, but I’m pissed off enough about the surprise non-ending of Matrix: Reloaded to simply wait for Kill Bill parts 1 and 2 to come out on rental, together. I will not let my cash give Hollywood an excuse to continue this trend by citing Kill Bill’s split release as a stunning success.