Twenty-eight years old

I’m turning twenty-eight tomorrow. That’s not really remarkable or anything, lots of people have before and lots more people will continue to turn twenty-eight for the foreseeable future. But there’s something about twenty-eight, I’m not sure what. It’s just been itching at the forefront of my mind these past few weeks. I feel… disquieted about it, I guess?

I’m not the kind of person that frets about age or tries to deny how old I really am; it’s silly to be afraid of something that’s inevitable, something you have no control over. People get older, that’s just how it is. Aging is easy, you don’t even have to do anything and it just happens. But aging fearlessly takes a lot of effort. I want to take the road less travelled, I want to age fearlessly. I don’t want to piss and moan about getting older the way it seems everybody else does. So it’s annoying to me that twenty-eight is giving me some degree of difficulty.

But maybe it’s not the actual aging itself that’s bothering me. I think it might be because I haven’t yet determined my purpose for this year. I usually have a plan of attack for each new year, some goals I want to accomplish, some dreams I want to chase. And I guess I just haven’t really nailed down what it is I want to do with twenty-eight yet. That must be what’s making me feel… disorderly?

I do love my birthday, though. I love it so much. Specifically, I love celebrating the shit out of it. And I’ve collected some very memorable birthday celebrations over the years.

My 20th birthday for instance, when I did that legendary 21-second box-o-wine stand that people still talk about today.

box o wine stand

And my best friends built me the bejewelled funnel of my dreams that year, which they very aptly named “Smash’s Life Support”.

dream funnel

Or my 22nd birthday, when we had the fanciest most “biz-cas” house party ever. We may have looked the part, but we certainly didn’t act it.

biz ca-jed birthday

biz cas again

At twenty-three I fell madly in love with a little cougar bar called Crocodile Rock…

croc rocking birthday

When I turned 25, my mom made me a jumbo banana bread cake and fucked up the frosting, spelling birthday without its very necessary ‘r’. Happy Bithday Ashley, indeed.

Happy Bithday

But more important, when I got all fucked up in the backyard later that night and started singing “For Whom the Bell Tolls” at the top of my lungs. Aging fearlessly at its finest.

I’ve had some good birthdays, that’s for damn sure. I’ve made more than my fair share of zany and crazy birthday memories.

And we carried on the tradition this weekend. It was awesomely fun. Krazzzy Karan showed up with a Heineken mini keg for me and from there we decided rounds upon rounds of good old-fashioned keg-stands were in order!

heiny birthday keg

kegstands!

I got to do some birthday shots with my darling Sara via Skype, because she currently resides all the way on the other half of the planet, in Vietnam.

Skype shots

We got real effed up last night…

party crew

laughing with my chums

partying with harry

The hangover today is pretty much exactly what you’d expect, and probably deserved. But it’s kept my mind off of these feelings of… uncertainty? And now that I’m circling back to that problem, I still don’t think I have an answer.

Everything in my life was in disarray last year, and now that the dust has finally settled, I guess I just don’t know what comes next. Marriage is great. Work is still kind of intense, but engaging and engrossing as always. I’ve got lots of hobbies and my social calendar for this summer is already booming with plans. And yet I’m still not satisfied with all of that. I want more, I just can’t put my finger on what it is I need.

I suppose I could finally get around to getting this crazy frigging wisdom tooth in the back of my mouth pulled. But that’s not really something I can feel accomplished about. That’s just something I’ve been putting off.

Twenty-eight, you sure are tricky. What do I want to be? What do I want to do? How am I going to make this year of life the best one yet? Seems like the answer to that requires a little more consideration than I was expecting. But as soon as I’ve figured it out, you can bet I’m going to throw myself into it with all of my heart. That’s the only thing I ever really know for sure… that I’m going to keep charging ahead, fearlessly, and living life with all the gusto I can muster. It’s the least I can do.

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Harvey’s Birthday

Harvey is my special little guy. Coming home to him is always the best part of my day. I get home and no matter what time it is, he races to the door to greet me. He weaves his chubby little body impatiently between my legs, oftentimes tripping me inadvertently as I try to get through the front door and kick off my shoes, because he just can’t wait one damn second for my loving attention. He demands that I crouch down and lower my face to his so he can “kiss” me hello by rubbing his nose up against mine. It’s our routine, it happens every night without fail.

D graciously lets Harv have the first round of kisses and affection every night when I get home. He knows how much I cherish those fleeting lovey dovey Harvey moments, because they don’t last long. Soon after he’s gotten his nightly greeting, he’s all rambunctious and hyper, practically bouncing off the walls. And once he switches to play mode you can’t get anywhere near him without being swatted in the face. Harv gives love on his own terms, and you take what you can get without any ifs or buts about it. So D steps aside, selflessly, and lets Harv get what he wants of my affection first. He’s amazing like that.

It’s been like this for three wonderful years now. Today is Harvey’s third birthday. I can’t even believe how fast the time goes. It feels like it was only yesterday that we brought him into our home and opened our hearts to him. It’s the best thing we’ve ever done, adopting him. Pets bring a special kind of happiness into our lives, a happiness that I can’t live without. The first year that D and I lived together we had no pet. It was sad, for me. I didn’t really realize what was missing at first, but I knew that something was wrong with our situation. Something was off, I felt sad often but nothing was really the matter with me.

Sometimes, we’d be sitting there at night, just watching T.V., and I’d suddenly feel an overwhelming ache. A gaping hole in my heart and the pain of it, so suddenly unbearable, I couldn’t make sense of. And then one day it dawned on me. I needed a pet. I needed something furry to love. There was always a cat or two roaming around in the house I grew up in. Fuzzy friends to play with and adore. I missed that. I missed the soft sound of kibbles being crunched in the next room over. I missed that pins and needles feeling felt in my legs while reading and cuddling a cat in my lap for hours on end. I even missed the constant assault of fur upon my clothing. I’d gladly spend a fortune on lint rollers for the love of a good pet.

So we made my universe right again when we adopted Harv. Because he means so much to me, and because I might be a touch mental, I spoiled Harv a bit for his birthday this year. He’s my special little guy and I dote on him so.

First up on the kitty birthday docket, a bath. We plunked him into the tub and scrubbed him up real good. He smells like a goddamned springtime bouquet now.

Next, an extravagance. A brand new kitty palace for my darling prince.

new kitty palace

harv's new digs

new toy fun

D thought I was being excessive. Harv already has a carpeted platform that he loves to play on and sleep in. But it’s not enough. Nothing will ever be enough for my precious Harvey. So more carpeted cat palaces it is! I’ll fill the whole frigging apartment with them if I have to, just to make Harv happy.

Then, we bought him a fancy can of wet food for dinner. The vet says that he’s a tad too fat so he’s been eating diet food for the past eight months, but we figured it being his birthday and all he was entitled to a diet cheat. We purposefully tried to buy the most expensive can we could find. $2.69 is as high-end as it gets for cats, I guess, because that was the priciest tin we could find. Harv lapped up every bite with the greedy enthusiasm you’d expect from someone who is cheating on their diet. Money well spent.

So maybe I spoiled him for his birthday this year. And maybe that seems crazy to you, but I don’t give a shit. Really, it’s the least I can do. Harvey totally changed our lives. He filled a hole in my heart, and he made us into a family.

our family

little harv and i

I owe him a hell of a lot more than $2.69.

Another Year of Awesome!

Happy 2nd Birthday to my beloved blog, Smashing Through Life!

It's a snake in a party fez!

It’s a snake in a party fez!

First off, welcome back Vincent the Viper, who proudly celebrated last year’s blog birthday with me while wearing a more traditional party hat. This year, Vincent is sporting a decidedly flamboyant party fez instead and I think he looks fabulous. During more lackadaisical times, my friend The Magpie and I entertained the notion of starting a business manufacturing and selling one-of-a-kind hats for fake snakes, but then real life got a lot more interesting in a hurry and we’ve since shelved that idea for the time being. Maybe we’ll come back to it again, when we’ve got some decent seed money pulled together. But anyways, that’s not what we’re here for today.

IT’S MY BLOG BIRTHDAY AND I’M REALLY FUCKING EXCITED ABOUT IT!

That’s why we’re here. Keep yourself on point, girl.

A lot can happen in a year, and I’m not saying that to be cliché. A lot really did happen to me in this past year. Some good, some bad, and some ugly too. I made some stunning 3-pointers, but I also spent a lot of time warming the bench, too. I genuinely enjoy looking back over a specific period of time and reflecting on the things that have happened in my life. It’s good for me, and it motivates me to keep reaching ever higher. I believe that my personal and professional development should never reach a plateau; I won’t let that happen. Not while I’m at the helm. If I’m learning and challenging myself on a consistent basis, then I’m growing and becoming a better me all the time. There is always room for improvement, and I’ve got an insatiable hunger for more. I’m always so eager to keep forging ahead, so it helps to look back once in a while. I need to make sure that I’m cutting the right path. That I’m living the life I’ve always wanted.

This blog’s mission, initially, was to act as an outlet for my frustrations and disappointments. It was an exercise in perpetual positivity. It was a place of refuge, an altar of optimism at which I could worship when I needed it the most. I was in a very dark place when it began, and this blog was my lifeline. It was a connection to the trademark brightness within, the brightness I’ve always been known for, but which was dimming more and more every day at an alarming rate. But it has since evolved, the aim has shifted. I don’t need to search for the positives in my life quite so desperately anymore because I’m surrounded by them.

This blog is continually evolving, just like me, and I couldn’t be happier with the progress we’ve made together so far. It’s a place where I can chronicle my life, my adventures, and my many dreams in the most positive terms possible.

So, what have I done this year that’s so whoop-de-fucking-doo great, you ask? I’ll tell you!

Smash’s Top 5 Awesomes This Year

1.) I went on the vacation of a lifetime

I've never been this happy to be awake at 6:30am in my life

I’ve never been this happy to be awake at 6:30am in my life

D and I dropped everything and went on our first ever vacation together. And we made it memorable as hell by saving up the extra bucks and flying the extra miles to get ourselves a slice of Hawaii. It was unreal! The food, the adventures, the beach, the ocean, the people, the sites. We loved every minute of it. Going all out for our first trip together was definitely the right call.

2.) I Got Engaged (and set the date, too!)

 An old shot, from about 5 years ago

An old shot, from about 5 years ago. Super Retro Disco Party, obviously.

D and I have been together a long time. We’re coming up on eight years this summer, if you can believe it. I loved him from the first moment I drunkenly gazed into his sweet blue eyes, and there was never any doubt. But there was never any rush to get to the paperwork either, and he caught me completely unawares when he proposed during our aforementioned vacation. I tease him sometimes about being totally devoid of emotion, but he really surprised me that time. I don’t even question this decision at all. We go together.

3.) I Won Shitfest 2013: Fall

I fuckin' love this trophy!

I fuckin’ love this trophy!

Some of you will remember my graceful acceptance of the award from this wonderful post that our dear friend, The IPC, allowed me to share with you on his site. I don’t write a movie blog, but I love movies so I read a lot of movie blogs. And I love the movie blogging community that I’ve stumbled into on WordPress. I loved reading the posts that were entered in the first Shitfest, and when a fall fest was announced I knew I had to get involved this time. I knew a shitty movie that I could write about. A real fucking shitty movie. I just wanted to have some fun, and it proved to be an experience that I will cherish forever. I’ve got the trophy to prove it.

4.) I Started a New Blog

The Kingdom

I miss writing essays. I miss feeling scholarly. I long for my undergrad, on rainy days mostly. So I decided to start a blog to review the works of Stephen King, to sort of keep in touch with that part of myself that so loved turning in assignments. I’m just hanging out over there, doing book reports basically. But it’s a fun hobby, and I enjoy it. I’m not rolling out the reviews quite as quickly as when I first started the blog, but I am still trucking along and reviews get posted at least once a month. It’s a way for me to explore other facets of my writing, too, and that’s important to me.

And finally, saving the biggest for last…

5.) I Got Promoted

Always the consummate professional, jumping on the bed in my suite during a work trip 3 years ago

Always the consummate professional, that’s me jumping on the bed in my suite during a work trip 3 years ago

I’ve been waiting for this a long time. It was an exciting, albeit painful journey at times, but I’m finally moving in the direction that I want to go. I had never realized how deeply ambitious I was until I joined the workforce. Procrastination and indifference were my MO whenever I pondered that almighty “What are you going to do when you grow up?” question that seems to haunt us from birth. But once I started carving out my own way in the world, I found myself immediately hooked on ambition. It’s a heady device, man. I made the choice to significantly alter my career path a couple of years ago, and it’s all starting to come together now. The sky really is the limit, and I thoroughly enjoy reaching for it with all of my might. I’ve got plans and ideas aplenty, and I’m going to make a splash in a big way. Greatness abounds, when you’re willing to work hard for it. I love how it feels to earn my living, and being rewarded professionally for my efforts feels divine.

I’m not kidding around, you guys. I truly am kicking the shit out of life every day. And I hope to continue doing so, right here on this bizarre little blog of mine, for a long while yet.

Here’s to yet another year of awesome. Cheers!

Harv’s Greatest Hits

I got the crazy cat gene from my dad’s family. They’re all nuts about cats. So, you’ve been sufficiently warned. I am a bit of a crazy cat lady. This post reflects my indulgence of the gene.

Happy 2nd Birthday Harvey!

My darling little Harv turns two years old today. And based on the astute calculations of a cat age calculator that I found online, he’s now the equivalent of a 25-year-old human. Right on buddy!

We got Harvey in June 2011, he was just a couple of months old. Looking back, its unreal how tiny he was! D and I had been together for a while and something was missing. I’ve always had pets in my house growing up. When I moved out, striking out on my own for the first real time since university, our family cat Chubby Cody had to stay behind with my mom. He wasn’t my cat to move. And my apartment hadn’t come with any free pets, so I had to go without for a little while. It felt weird not having a furry little buddy around the house. After a while, once we’d settled in, I started to feel that it was time. Time for a new little buddy to love. I told D that I needed a pet and we started our search.

It wasn’t long before we found him. Adopting Harvey is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. When I picked him up for the first time and he snuggled his tiny little kitten head into my shoulder I knew we were meant to be. Instantaneous love.

Since the internet is strictly fuelled by cute cat pictures these days, I thought I would celebrate Harvey’s spectacular life thus far by counting down his greatest hits in napping. It’s just my way of giving back. You’re welcome internet.

Hold onto your donuts people, it’s about to get crazy cute up in this bitch!

HARVEY’S GREATEST HITS: NAPPING EDITION

10) Cat on a sill

Our old apartment had wide window sills, perfect for cat naps! A young Harv, getting his beauty rest on. You’ve gotta hand it to him, he’s got great potential.

window ledge

9) The Fancy Man

Sometimes Harv likes to put airs on. The airs of a sophisticated and refined house cat. He’ll sit with his paw draped leisurely across his manly chest. It is an optimal napping position to showcase his little cat boobies. Exquisite!

fancy cat

8) Classic Couch Surfing

Here again we see a young Harvey demonstrating his remarkable napping prowess. This was before his aforementioned boobies came in.

harvey nap

7) Nest of Blankets

Harv loves to burrow himself deep within the blankets on our bed. This is a particularly desirable napping space when the bed is being made. As the sheets are lifted, being positioned on the bed mid-air, Harv likes to dive under them. Making himself look as cute as possible, ingratiating himself in your heart, to ensure that he isn’t ousted from what is sure to be a supremely comfortable nap.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

6) Cruisin’ in the Catmobile

Best purchase ever. It paid itself off hand-over-fist in cat joy within hours of bringing it home. Harv loves to nap in what has come to be known as The Catmobile. It’s his own private penthouse of cat nap heaven!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

5) Soaking up the Sun

Surely you’ve all realized by now that cats are solar-powered? They need to soak up as much sunlight as possible during the day so that they are adequately prepared for their nighttime adventures. You know, like howling at the front door until it feels like your ear buds are bleeding. Or unceremoniously knocking those sanctimonious houseplants off their pedestals when they least expect it.

IMG_1078

4) Table Dancing

Harvey is not allowed on the coffee table or the dinner table. That was a difficult battle though. Many vigorous and discouraging spurts of the water bottle helped us secure our ground. We fought long and hard to win that one. Sadly, our victory cost us the side table.

IMG-20120701-00060

3) Lovin’ D

Harv loves to sleep with D. His favourite thing is to curl up around D’s head and briefly lick his hair before retiring to kitty sleepland for the night. He’s been doing this ever since we brought him home. He’s incorrigible! And precious.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

2) Straight-laced

We have a nice couch, but we’ve kept my old futon from my university days too. For the occasional use when someone sleeps over. Harvey, however, sees the futon in another light. It’s his and it serves him tirelessly. Its been enlisted to serve a higher purpose now. Higher than even drunken sleepovers. Its calling now is to provide Harvey with a superlative place for napping at all times. And it hasn’t failed him yet.

IMG-20120527-00043

1) Bliss Catsonified!

Well I couldn’t very well say personified now could I? So Catsonified it is. Ah, wait. Let’s try this again… Purrsonified! Nailed it. This is my most favourite picture of Harvey to date. And as such, it has reigned supreme as the desktop wallpaper ever since it was snapped. He truly is the happiest little kitten in the world in this picture. The very epitome of bliss. That is one nap that’s been done some serious justice!

best nap

Once again, you’re very welcome internet. This should provide you with sufficient sustenance for this week. And I think it’s earned me a week without any of those frustrating mac rainbow wheels, yes? Come on, hook a girl up.

Happy Birthday to the cutest little snuggle munch that ever lived. You’re totally rad Harv, I dig your style.

September

Do you remember the 21st night of September?

It’s that time of year again. You know, when summer fades into fall. The goose bumps that populate your arms as you step out the door on a dubiously sunny morning are telling you to ditch the flip-flops and sundresses in favour of something warmer. It’s the time of year for apple orchards, puffy outdoorsy vests, plaid of all sorts, knit hats, new backpacks, and most importantly, it’s a time for change.

There’s something afoot during the last couple of weeks of September that always makes me feel wistful. Especially when I hear that old Earth Wind & Fire song, aptly titled September. Hearing this song actually happens more often than you might think, because of my proclivity for 70’s internet radio when I’m hungover.

September is the most significant month of the year for me. My personal calendar year begins in September. January doesn’t mean a thing to me. Resolutions and all the crap, whatever. It’s still winter, it’s still freezing and dark out. But September brings with it a drastic change in seasons, and has often wrought drastic changes in my life.

All of my most precious memories are captives of September. When I hear this song a little movie of all those wonderful things starts playing in my mind. I’m transported back in time, and I remember…

I remember meeting two of the most important people in my life:

Then a year later, being lucky enough to add another wonderful person into our fold:

I remember living alone, completely unsupervised for the first time in my life:

And all the excellent keggers we were able to have, unfettered by parents and rules:

I remember my first lifetime ban from a bar after I draught ‘n’ dashed with Joce-force. Then laughing uncontrollably while hiding out from “the po po” in the bushes:

There were two roomie birthdays at the end of the month, both Jenna and Whit:

And how epic all of our celebrations were when the last roomie finally turned 19 and could ditch the fake I.D.

I remember shotgunning beers at 9:00am for homecoming!

I remember having school spirit:

Discovering that Bigfoot truly does exist, and how bold his hands were:

I remember falling in love…

After graduation, when it was time to grow up, I remember getting my first job. A real crack at a career:

I remember that I’m brave:

I took my very first flight, all the way to the Middle East! Completely on my own in a new country, with no prior travelling experience.

And I remember feeling complete fulfillment in my job and being humbled by the realization that I was making a difference in the lives of others:

And most importantly of all, I remember…

Dancing in September!

Oh the memories, so sweet! Such an amazing thing to have when you’re not having the brightest of days…

I love that song, and I love the flood of memories it brings. It  is my reassurance that I’m doing a real kick-ass job at this “living” thing. No matter what changes and where this life takes me, I will always have: the most spectacular friends, my darling D, and a deep-seated passion to live a remarkable life.

And if all this is what’s behind me, then I can’t wait to see what else is coming my way. It can only get better from here.

We’re back, baby!

I apologize in advance for the length of this post. I’ve got a lot to say this week folks!

There are too many awesome things to celebrate about this past weekend. So many awesome things that all fall under the wonderful umbrella that I call being ‘back in action’.

It takes a while to settle in to your new digs and I consider myself officially settled! As of this weekend there was not a single significant thing that needed to be done with the apartment. This made me completely free to focus all of my energy on my sorely neglected partying habits.

There’s only one thing that sucked the fucking big one this weekend, the fact that the elevator in our building was NOT working from Friday afternoon right up until Monday during the day. When you’re planning a big weekend bender and you live on the 24th floor, nothing could be more ill-timed than the elevator losing it’s crucial ability to propel your drunk ass up to your bed.

Two major events that we celebrated: Joss and Harry are back in town after their trip to Thailand and Sara’s birthday extravaganza. Let’s breakdown the madness, shall we?

Friday night: Joss and Harry’s Homecoming Partaaay!

I was living for Friday night all week long. There’s nothing that anticipation does better than draw the motherfucking shit out of the work week. I ever so impatiently counted down the days while the happy travellers were away, and although I loved following Joss’s sweet travel blog every week, you just can’t beat the real thing! 5 o’clock on Friday finally rolls around and I basically sprinted out the door to the subway. I get on the train and I can feel my whole body thrumming with excitement. There’s a short delay at the station and I get a text from D telling me about the elevator situation. He advises me to “take your time, it’s a real workout!”

That’s just fucking great. It’s sweltering hot out, I’m wearing tight jeans, and now I’ve gotta climb 24 flights of stairs? Fuck that shit!

And of course I’m cocky about it. Telling myself, “oh whatever, I walk all the time, I’ll be fine.” Famous last words, right? Somewhere between the 7th and 8th floors in a spell of light-headed surrender I  shoot off a desperate text to the Magpie telling her that I might die in a stairwell this weekend. (Oh P.S. I have a cell phone now. I wasn’t really going to mention, but I thought maybe the fact-checking types aka my two, if that, readers might wonder since I boastfully went on about not having one in an earlier post).

I managed to huff and puff my way to my floor eventually, and I was miserable at the thought of having to climb them again later in a drunken stupor. That was really going to blow! But, as shitty as it was I was not going to miss this party for the world!

We get to the party and it is just the best! Amazing people and booze, it’s a winning combination. Catching up, hearing the stories, seeing the pictures and being reunited with all my BFFs… Life doesn’t get any better than that.

The best part about it is that we were all together again. I can’t remember the last time since graduation that the four of us: Joss, Sar, Karan, and myself were all committed to the same event. And not just that, but everyone was committed for tomorrow night too!!!! YAAYY!

I’m a total energy sponge. Whatever the mood and tone of the party, I soak it right up and reflect it back. If the vibes are bad, I can’t possibly have a good time. And the vibes at this party were off the charts! My face and stomach hurt from smiling and laughing the night away. Fuck chicken soup for the soul, it’s good times with your friends for the soul, people. Does it every time.

The above used to happen ALL the time. And I thought it would last forever. But times change and so does your life. I may not see these guys as much as I want to, so on those rare occasions when the stars align and we all RSVP “yes” to the same event you know it’s going to be a friggen blast. You make me so happy!

Downed a bunch of drinks and shots, laughed my ass off, and stumbled home with a nice black spot in my brain where the final events of the night are resigned to obscurity. Friday night was a major success! Welcome home Joss and Harry, you were very much missed. And that’s only half of it…

Saturday night: Sara’s Birthday Extravaganza!

Saturday morning was the fucking pits! Oh my good god, I was hung over. I stayed horizontal on the couch until about 3:00pm. That’s when the hurt in my brain started to subside enough that I could make it to the shower. No matter what, it was round 2 and I had to find a way to put myself together again.

Everyone was pre-drinking in Bolton and then getting in a party limo headed to Club Muzik in T.Dot. D and I planned to pre-drink with Joss and Harry and meet everyone else there.

Long before Saturday night when my weekend plans were revealed to my co-workers, I was met with some slight derision when I mentioned where we were going. I guess it wasn’t the “coolest” or “trendiest” or whatever the fuck criteria are considered desirable by the “locals”. Whatever. That’s what the birthday girl wants and that’s what she gets, and damned if we’re going to go about it with a bad attitude.

So we head to the club, and the cab ride was ridiculously fun because of a crazy cabbie from Bangladesh who regaled us with tales of hit and runs back home. Apparently it’s really common for a cab driver to just mow someone down and keep on trucking without a backwards glance. I didn’t really get the joke, but I guess you had to be there?

We waited in a bullshit line for what felt like eternity, and by the time it got moving D had run off to piss in an alley because he couldn’t hold it any longer. But luckily he caught up in time and got in. There was some more initial bullshit what with the bartenders serving us bottles of beer with no mention that bottles couldn’t be taken out to the garden. Seriously? Then pour the fucking beer in a plastic cup when you serve it bitch, damn!

The one server was a real biz-nitch. When we first got there I stood at the bar for what seemed like ages waiting to order a drink. The server blew right past me and beelined it for our friend John. She leaned her pathetically under-developed chest on the counter and shamelessly asked what he’d like. And John, true champ that he is told her “I’d like you to serve my friend, she was here first”.

If he hadn’t of done that I don’t know when I’d have been noticed. Muchos gracias, John! If there’s any chance that you’re reading this Lisa, you’ve got a great husband and you guys were so cute together at the club. And also, it was Lisa’s birthday too… so happy birthday lady!

D quickly remedied the beer bottles problem by pilfering some plastic cups. And after a few jagerbombs, tubies, and various other shots it didn’t seem to matter much anymore.

The club itself was fucking sweet! Maybe the crowd are a bunch of losers from Mississauga, but the space was really nice. I didn’t feel crowded or overheated at all. The music wasn’t so loud that you couldn’t talk to your friends, and the garden outside was so refreshing! I’d say they’ve got a pretty killer venue.

And again, I’ve got to say that the best part was being together with Joss, Sara, and Karan in a club. We used to club it up ALL the time in our Waterloo days. And I’m not a big club person by any means, but a small part of me did miss it.

One of our friends got a little too drunk and went down for the count. But it wasn’t just a toss her in the cab and send her home situation. The majority of the group was headed back home together in the party limo. So we needed a plan to keep things going for everyone else.

I might also mention at this point that I wore high heels… ALL night! I am murdering my high heels resolution, so yayy me! The last time I wore high heels to a club was because I needed to heighten for my fake I.D., so a helluva long time ago!

My feet were killing and needed a break. I wanted the party to keep going for the birthday girl, so I volunteered to babysit for a bit. I got to sit down, and just let our girl Felish rest. Bouncers were obviously on the lookout for those kinds of scenarios though, so I got a little crafty. When Felish’s head tumbled onto my chest, I let it stay there and just told the peeps that I was getting free motorboats!! Boo-yaaaah!

Worked out pretty well too!

When everyone was finally ready to call it a night, we made sure the party peeps was safely piled into the limo and then hopped our own cab home.

It was an exhausting, but exhilarating weekend! I have some really wicked friends, and my only hope is that we get together and pull these kinds of weekends off a lot more this summer.

Monday morning came on like a ton of bricks, but you know what they say. Time flies when you’re wiping someone else’s puke off your lap!

To-Do Lists

My my my, how things have so drastically changed in the course of a year! This past Friday, that’s right 4/20 y’all, I celebrated my 25th birthday. Bit of a landmark as far as birthdays go, so I thought I’d take a tour back through the year and set some goals for myself for this next year as an illustrious 25 year old.

I am hugely devoted to my daily To-Do List, and one of the greatest feelings of the day is when all of the items have officially been “crossed off” the list. My lists are always titled “Monday’s Shit to Do”, etc. The exception is Tuesday’s list which is normally titled “Tuesday’s Gone” because I get a kick out of the Skynyrd reference. When all of the items are crossed off I give myself a little at-the-desk-dance party. Just a quiet little shuffle to myself to note how fucking awesome I am at conquering the day.

At this time last year my work life was a fucking black hole of awfulness. The bitch in charge of the training department choose someone else over me as her second in command because I didn’t really care for puckering up to provide the daily rim-job that was apparently required to get anywhere in the company. I was surrounded by slackers and assholes who all wanted to call the shots but not provide any actual results. My really amazing boss was on maternity leave and it took two people to fill her job while she was gone. Those two people were such horrendous posers that they didn’t even last through the 6 months of mat leave before they were shit-canned. So the rest of us just tried to do our best to stay afloat everyday.

Also, mid-April last year I had been working on a very intensive project. I busted my ass on this thing for 6 months straight, and the project completion came with a plum trip to St. Lucia to visit the client. And was I rewarded for all my hard work with this trip? You’d think so, but no. The dickbag boss man decided to take that trip for himself. Seriously? He could afford a trip like that without even batting an eye and he had to rob me of my very hard earned and well deserved reward. That was a major sign for me that I wasn’t in the right place.

Everyone was out for themselves and that was the bottom line. Needless to say, last year I was not feeling good about work. We were constantly swamped and the daily To-Do List was always over 20-30 things that needed to be done and I’d average about 12-14 things crossed off the list. I’m so organized and I’ve got my shit in a pile, so coming to work everyday and not being able to climb over the other side of shit mountain was really starting to get to me. At 5’oclock, quitting time would roll around and my list would look something like this:

You can see that there is a whole bunch of stuff on this list and only two things have been crossed off, and it also starts on the page before it! This actually isn’t a work to-do list but a personal one, but it’s a good example nonetheless.

I really cared about my job though. I loved what I was doing, I just hated being shit on all the time. I decided to tough it out a bit longer. It got better for a while when my boss came back from mat leave, then took another ridiculous nose-dive into absolute crap back in January. I finally reached my breaking point and made the realization that things were never going to change. No matter how many cool things were coming down the pipeline, the company philosophy remained the same. It had never really meshed with my personal working philosophy to begin with, but I just hadn’t realized it until this past winter.

At that point I made a vow to myself: I was going to dust off the old resume and start putting it out there in the hopes of finding a place that jived with me more. I wanted to work for a company that wasn’t about being “liked” over doing hard work. It seemed that the slackers always rose to the top and the people that actually provided results and could deliver quality work just kept getting pushed to the bottom of the pile.

Fuck that! Fuck working 13-14 hour days and never getting appreciated for it. Fuck struggling everyday to do my absolute best only to be met with more bullshit. Fuck having to kiss someone’s ass just to be noticed. I firmly believe that people should get where they’re meant to be by the merit of their hard work and determination.

And you know what? I’m there now. I found a wicked new job, interviewed, and nailed it! I gave my notice back at the end of March and counted down the days. I got myself a fresh start. I admit that I will truly miss a handful of wonderful people who worked just as hard as I did. But I also could not wait to get away from all of the people who routinely made my skin crawl… *shudder*

In these past couple of weeks I’ve gotten myself a new job, in a new city, a new apartment, and a new lease on life. I’m shedding this cocoon of bullshit and transforming myself into a shiny new go-getter all over again. I felt like I was suffocating at my old job.
And now with this new opportunity I can breathe again. I’m taking every breath in deep and letting it roll out smooth; enjoying the feeling of freedom.

With so many changes going down in my life, I felt like it would be appropriate to make myself a personal To-Do List of some things I hope to accomplish during my 25th year. The joy that I feel when I complete my daily To-Do Lists is immense, so I can only imagine how I’ll feel a year from now when I review this To-Do List and can claim accomplishment of my goals. I’m going to focus on me and being the best me that I can be day in and day out.

“The 25th Year’s Shit to Do”:

  1. I’m going to write this blog regularly!
    I know I’ve been a major slacker with it lately, and having all that I’ve had to do is no excuse. I resolve that I will write a new post about the most awesome thing that happened in my week every Sunday afternoon. On a Sunday afternoon I shall reflect on the week to provide you, beloved readers, with your weekly dose of awesome optimism prime!
  2.  I’m going to champion high heels!
    I am not what you would call “graceful”. I never have been, and I’m cool with that. However, I’d like to try for a little bit of grace and an increase in style for my daily life. I clomp around in flats and sneakers all the time and I think I need a little pep. There’s a girl that I work with who says that she “can climb mountains in her heels”. I’m not trying to scale Everest here, but I would like to be able to walk down the street in heels without looking totally out of my element. This is my Everest:
  3. I’m going to get myself more education!
    One of my biggest dreams is to go back to school and get my Masters degree. That’s super expensive and I have tons of debt from my undergrad that I’m working to pay off. But I love learning. In an effort to continue pursuing knowledge, I’m going to actively look for some courses and workshops that I can do in my spare time to become more well-rounded. One of the things that I looked at today was doing a 4 week course in Flash Animation. What the hell? Why not? I’m going to find myself a wicked “summer camp” for some cool new skill and learn me something new! I haven’t decided what yet, but I’m going to find something fun and engaging.
  4.  I’m going to be more proactive about my finances!
    I work hard, and I do put away some decent savings. But I feel that I could be doing more for my financial future. I should get started on my RSPs, and sort out my banking situation. I still have a student Visa, and I am no longer a student. I read an article about the big mistakes that 20-somethings make with their money, and it was inspiring. I want to be smart about mine and become more capable of managing my own finances. I don’t want to wake up one day and realize that I’ve been pissing all my money away, or that I’m stuck living paycheck to paycheck. I may not be rolling in the benjis, but I want to feel comfortable and secure.
  5. I’m going to explore the city!
    I’m moving to Toronto in a week and a half. I’ve grown up in a small town my whole life, so this is a big change for me. I hate feeling lost and unsure of where to go or where I am. I’m going to take time to explore the city and become comfortable navigating it on my own. I also want to benefit from all that Toronto has to offer. I’m going to live like a tourist and try to see the city with new eyes everyday. I don’t want one bit of it to pass me by, and I don’t want to become jaded and tromp through the city unappreciative of its beauty. I want to be able to get myself anywhere in the city at a moment’s notice. I want to give directions to others with confidence because I know where the hell I’m going.
These are the personal goals that I have set for myself this year. I feel so incredibly awesome when I get to cross stuff off the daily shit list, so I can only imagine how amazing I’ll feel when I look back in a year’s time and can say that I’ve met each of these goals. 25 is going to be the year of my reawakening to life! It’s going to be a truly epic journey, and I hope you’ll stick around for the ride. Expect to get your weekly doses of optimism on time as well 😉