Istvan pooped adorably on my kitchen counter while I slept. At this juncture, it is unclear to me why he’s still loitering in my apartment, since my OCD, sick prepackaged diet and shocking cleanliness have left him exactly nothing to eat.

I do have an incredible cable package though. Maybe he’s super into Border Security.


Runaway… Istvan

So, right. I received an email from my next-door neighbour the other day.

(I’m given to understand that it’s “weird” to get an email from your neighbour, but we live in a small building, and also I’m cursed, okay, I’m a loner, Dotty, a rebel, but I’ve lived here since Jesus was a baby, and so, the assorted fuckups and yahoos who’ve shagged ass out of here as soon as their leases expired used to come see me on the regular with their problems and needs, hornswoggled by urban legends about my powers. Giving them my email address was just easier.)


In this email, my neighbour asked me if I’ve noticed any “pests” recently.

“Just you, baby,” I didn’t say. Instead, I took her serious and allowed that I have silverfish and spiders, but not such as mice and cockroaches, if those were what she was suggesting.

In return, she reported that she’d seen “a rodent” a few days prior, and advised me to keep my foodstuffs under lockdown, as a precaution.

“I don’t own food, you fool!” I didn’t say. Instead, I convinced myself that the reason I haven’t seen any “rodents” here is either a) because my sweet friend and former roommate (RIP) is still hanging out here spiritually, chasing them all away, b) because before she died, she peed and/or barfed on basically every object in the apartment, and the scent of it has perhaps lingered, or c) both.

I mean, we had a mouse in here one time, about nine years ago, but she killed him instantly, and I’ve never seen one since, even though it’s a ground-floor apartment, the windows are open pretty frequently, there’s a huge gap under the front door, I’ve seen all kinds of urban wildlife goofing off on the lawn, over the years, and I saw a rat frolicking in the snow outside just a couple of months ago, a couple of months after my sweet friend was called home.

Here she is, okay. We used to have food sitting out in the open 24/7, but “rodents”? It is to laugh.

blurry furry


In the small hours of this morning, just as I happened to look up, for no obvious reason, I saw a mouse scamper out of my kitchen, in along the wall, and under my couch. A moment later, I heard Mysteeeeerious Scraaaaatching in my bedroom.

By this time, I had already secured my meager foodstuffs, and–okay lookit, one of the major things in my private life is feeding the local crows, but that’s another story for another time. All you really need to know at this juncture is that some of my jacket pockets contain Peanut Residue, and thinking of it in the wake of The “Rodent” Report, I tried to disguise it by stuffing those pockets with Bounce sheets, to prevent “rodents” from chewing them open and peeing inside them.

Still, I worried.

I wanted to tell my neighbour that I too had seen the “rodent,” but I don’t know her life, okay, the main thing I know about her is she distributed a building-wide survey when she thought a water pipe was too loud, but she couldn’t convince our landlord to take action on it. It was too loud, but a survey felt… excessive.

What if she wanted our landlord to bring in an exterminator? What if he responded by giving us glue boards? I’d never use a glue board, okay, they’re on a par with leghold traps in terms of monstrous “solutions,” if you ask me, but I couldn’t stop her from doing it, and she might, okay, it’s the “rodent” thing. Not “have you seen a mouse,” but “have you seen any pests,” not “I saw a mouse the other day,” but “I saw a rodent.”

It’s meaningful. Girl, you know it’s true.

But what if I said nothing, let the mouse have the run of the place unless/until he did something unforgiveable, like chew up my laptop adapter cable, or drink all my gin? What if he did worse elsewhere? What if he’s actually a beautiful lady, a beautiful pregnant lady, and suddenly we had a full-on infestation, instead of just this one goober trying to make a better life in the big city?

Hantavirus, okay.


I blamed myself.

I never worried about leaving my windows open when my sweet friend was around, because like I say, we had one mouse, one time, and the indignity was too much for her to bear. But she died about four months ago, and I’ve had the windows open more than ever–she had a heart condition among other things, was quick to take a chill, but I run hot like lava–and so many times, I’ve thought oh no, that frolicking snow rat will come in. Baby raccoons will come in. The smoke monster from Game of Thrones will come in.

I’ve thought it nearly every day, and now, here was this mouse. Never mind that my landlord did a major demo just upstairs a couple of weeks ago, likely displacing all kinds of life: this was definitely my fault. The Law of Attraction at work.


And it’s such bad timing, besides, all the way around. My sweet friend never had the opportunity to murder the mouse and make a plaything of its corpse. The mouse never had the opportunity to enjoy the plentiful food that sat out in the open when my friend was here. He’s shown up now, when the closest thing to food that anyone ever finds on my floor is a torn-up Kleenex soaked with my tears.

Don’t eat that, man. I don’t care that it’s enriched with lotion. It’s still not food.

Come on.

Anyway, although at the time of this writing I feel no special need to take action, it occurred to me in the moment that it might come to that, you know, if I see one ant in here, I don’t give a care, but if I see a hundred, I have to kill them. I don’t want to–I’ll stay right still and let a mosquito feed on me, Zika be damned, I do exactly nothing about silverfish, wood lice and flies, I keep paper towel tubes on hand to rescue spiders from my sinks and tub–but visitation and infestation are not the same, yeah?

A mouse, though.

A whole, entire mouse.

Like I say, glue boards are out of the question, and so is poison. Spring traps were a maybe at first, because there’s nowhere nearby that I could release the mouse if I caught him in a live trap, but… was I really going to kill a mouse because it would be inconvenient to relocate him? Sit here and die of Zika, who cares?! but then kill a mouse so I didn’t have to bag him and take him to the park?

Oh my fuck, it’s a whole big thing. He must have friends and/or family around here. Take him far away, introduce him to a new world, it’s Coyote Ugly all over again, but without John Goodman to disapprove of his choices and remind him where he came from. Of his wholesome, small-town values!


Plus: that park is full of crows and seagulls. I feed those crows, okay. The day I showed up with this mouse could be Crowsmas, for all I know.

Plus: mice are pretty emotional, okay, I’m going to catch him, bag him, and then carry him who knows how far away, letting him steep in terror the whole entire time?

I wish this was the biggest and most serious problem facing me at this time, but I’m grateful for the distraction, all the same.



Behold: the Ray Bradbury Challenge.

So, right. I saw this thing yesterday on one of the writing pages I follow on Facebook, Ray Bradbury was quoted as saying “Write a short story every week. It’s not possible to write 52 bad short stories in a row.”

I thought, “Well, that’s horseshit.”

Because you know what, there are people who’ve never written anything good in their whole entire lives, that’s just the facts, and also, there are people who got a raw deal, okay.

Like for instance, I remember this one fanfic author–but let me just stop myself right there and say, there are some brilliant, gorgeous, incredible works of fanfiction, okay, it only has a bad reputation because people who want to laugh at fans seek out the dumbest, cruddiest, sleaziest stuff they can find, as if nothing dumb, cruddy and sleazy has ever made it to a publishing house.


This was a slash author (an author of romantic and/or erotic same-sex pairings of canonically heterosexual characters) and bless her soul, she’d set herself the task of writing tag and/or fixit stories for every episode of this one TV series.

It was a terrible series, okay, just, just breathtakingly stupid, and poorly written, besides, and the performances, my God, the performances, that crap shack had more ham in it than the Meat section at Safeway on Christmas Eve. Besides all that, it was one of those shows with a revolving door of love interests, which…

Look, put yourself in this author’s place. You have created an alternate universe in which the two men you’re writing about are in a loving, committed, ongoing relationship, and you’ve set yourself the task of writing that into stories about every episode of the show they’re in, even as they bang lady after lady after lady on that show.

That, and the usual assortment of conflicts and rifts shows use to create dramatic tension between the characters you’ve come to love, and the Weird Stuff specific to this series.

My point–made at considerable length, I admit–is that this woman wrote 52 bad short stories in a row. 52 bad short stories at least. And she wasn’t a bad writer, okay. She wasn’t great, but she was all right. Serviceable. There was just no possible way she could achieve what she’d set out to do and not send it straight down the terlet from the git-go.

You can only handwave all those ladies as smokescreens or involuntary, drug-induced accidents or undercover operations or etc. so many times before it becomes obvious that you drank yourself to sleep right after the credits ran. You can only have those guys go home and snuggle or whatever after some interpersonal catastrophe so many times before they start to come off like a couple of horny psychopaths.


You can absolutely write 52 bad short stories in a row, without even trying, and my goal is to prove that over the course of the next year. I may not reach my goal, you understand. I could die. I could get bored with it, like I did when I decided to write a poem every day. But I’m going to try, and if even one of them turns out to be worth your time, I’ll… I don’t even know what.

I’ll boggle; yes.



You’re right, Porsche Carrera Man. You’re so, so, so, so right.

I was forced to know about a Porsche Carrera

on my walk home from work this afternoon.

It was flat, dark grey, a shade most likely known as

Leaving Your Sobbing, Aged Mother Alone At The Old Folks Home Even Though A Storm’s A-Brewin’ And You Know Full Well That She’s Terrified Of Thunder. What Does It Matter? She’s Forgetful Now, So Forgetful, Has Probably Forgotten That She Saw You Today Anyway, Will Forget The Storm Too, As Soon As It Has Passed. Turn Up Your Sugar Ray Mix CD And Live The Dream.

(The Carrera has a CD player in this scenario. It wasn’t the latest model.)

It was 5:17pm and he gunned his engine and drove at reckless speeds

down a narrow street in the medical district

aka The Bike Path

Tons of foot traffic

Women and children first

Unless you’re driving an older Porsche Carrera

in which case the sky’s the limit

(except he’ll probably go to hell eventually, if hell exists, and not skyward,

because he drove like an asshole

like a goatse-level asshole

don’t Google that


I saw him again a short time later

gunning his engine and driving at reckless speeds

this time down six lanes of congested rush-hour traffic


he seemed to say, senselessly







YOU WANT TO FUCK ME, he seemed to say







I didn’t want to fuck him

I just wanted him to drive a less boring car

But I don’t drive anything

so I don’t count.


The Weather Network has a daily poll/quiz/whathaveyou.

The Weather Network has a daily poll/quiz/whathaveyou.
It’s called COFFEE BREAK,
all caps, just like that,
predicting your desperation,
though about as accurately as it does the rain.
(14-day forecasts are for suckers.
Stop lying to yourself about that.)
Which province is called Land of Living Skies?
Which of the following is a type of cloud?
Which of these weather events scares you the most?
No matter the subject at hand,
the comments are always unhinged arguments
about climate change
wind farms
solar panels draining the sun’s energy.
“Wake up, sheeple!”
It’s so unexpected.
People post photos of sunsets
summer corn
then make rape threats to strangers
who believe in global warming.
I like it quite a bit.
(Not the rape threats;
the disparity.)
Yesterday COFFEE BREAK asked
What’s your favourite thing about fall?
and it gave you three choices of things to love:
wearing sweaters
wearing boots
pumpkin spice
I mean it.
Those were the options.
Not the changing trees
cooler weather
longer nights
blustery days
the smell of burning leaves
shuffling through other leaves while you’re out walking
little kids whose mittens are tied together
little dogs who have to wear a jacket
little old ladies in plastic rain bonnets
Not even people who start wearing a parka on September 1st
even though it’s still 25C outside.
Just sweaters, boots, pumpkin spice.
These are what you love about fall
if you don’t love fall, actually.
Like how my favourite thing about Xmas
is rum and eggnog.
Valentine’s Day:
cheap candy on the 15th.
(Not the buying of it, mind you.
Dusty, unwanted heart-shaped boxes
available at deep discounts because the candy won’t keep till next year.
Love for sale.)
bits and pieces of peoples’ costumes
strewn in the gutter on the morning after.
Boots, I ask you.
What kind of psychopath..?

AHS: Freak Show was a shit sandwich, if you ask me.

AHS: Freak Show was a shit sandwich, if you ask me.
There was this one episode,
I kept watching but I gave up on it then,
The Lobster Boy wants to sing “Come As You Are.”
“I’m gonna do it my way,” he growls,
and then he does it his way,
even though his way is not very sportsmanlike.
The season is set in 1952,
if you take my meaning.
Tons of people perform anachronistic songs in Freak Show;
that’s not the problem exactly.
The problem is,
I don’t watch American Horror Story
to hear people sing
and you don’t go to a freak show
to hear people sing.
I know you got the music in you, Evan Peters,
but there’s a time and place.
If you have a point to make
about seeing people three-dimensionally,
make it on your own time, friendo.
It’s all downhill after “Come As You Are,”
for some reason.
A revolving door of guest stars,
each with his own subplot
unconnected to any story.
Neil Patrick Harris is a psychotic lizard salesman
who’s in an abusive relationship with a dummy.
Also he was on American Horror Story.
(Ha, I got you.)
Ernest Borgnine rises from the grave
to sing “Swinging on a Star.”
No thanks, Ernest Borgnine, I would not like to swing on a star,
I’m pretty busy these days.
But neither would I rather be a pig.
Come on.
There are more options than that.
Gerard Depardieu wanders in
looking for deep-fried Kool-Aid.
He saw it on Buzzfeed:
50 Insane County Fair Foods That Will Give You Life
Then Kill You Because Fried Food is Unhealthful.
I think that scene was a mistake on his part
and they only left it in to woo the critics.
and that was a freak show, I imagine
but he wasn’t singing anything.
(Probably he was singing something.
Who wouldn’t?)
You know who else they got, though
–and I don’t know how they did it–
Denise Richards.
There’s this big musical extravaganza
the whole cast singing “525,600 Minutes,”
because I am cursed in this life,
and right at the end of it
music swelling
Denise Richards takes the stage and says
“Ask yourself: who are the real freaks?”
Fade to black.
I told you
AHS: Freak Show was a shit sandwich.
I still came back for season 5 though.

Scan BC has gone downhill

Scan BC has gone downhill.
Not w/r/t its content; no.
Its content has always been comfortably insane,
and I think we can rely on that.
People down south won’t believe you if you say it
Canada is full of drunks
sex perverts
people who get in fistfights with their landlord.
I used to know a guy who was beaten with his own tree.
(You’d think it would be bad enough
being beaten with someone else’s tree,
but there are degrees.)
For a while there, though
public masturbation was rampant suddenly
people pulling their goalies
feeding the geese
in front of God and everyone
and sometimes Orange Julius.
We’ve been scarred by those events.
Scan BC says:
someone fought a power pole
someone robbed a jewelry store
someone yelled at a dog
in front of God and everyone
and sometimes Orange Julius.
And before,
the comments rivaled the posts for sheer entertainment
(apart from friendly accusations,
“Where were YOU last nite Dave Olafson lol”)
Now, though
sometimes even fourth
all ask if the accused was masturbating lol.
No laughing matter, if you ask me.
Lazy, uninspired jokes are the real crime here.
Thanks in advance
for not comparing them to masturbation.