Meeting Disclaimer What Bluff Puntification of the Upshot, Side Whiner (Meeting Kris)

The Meeting

So, Friday rolled around, and I was curious as to how my meeting with Kris would go.

I was supposed to meet her in the lobby of the hotel she was staying at and then we were to go somewhere for drinks to be possibly joined by my wife.

With the help of a friend, I figured out a place where we could go, so all that had to be done was to meet her and head on over there.

I was supposed to meet her after work.

I had injured myself during Karate the day before, so it took longer to walk to places than normal. I wasn’t sure how long it would take me to reach there in my injured state, so I decided to leave a little earlier than I normally would have.

Stupid me ended up getting there way earlier than I calculated, so I settled into a seat in the lobby and worked on a future entry in my palm pilot.

I was probably there for about twenty minutes when I decided to get up and walk around.

It’s a good thing I did, because it turns out that Kris was sitting opposite where I was, and we would not have seen each other.

She waved and stood up. I gave her a hug, as I was genuinely glad to meet her.

We went to the pub that my friend had recommended.

The game was on.



Disclaimer

For those of you who are obsessed with conspiracy and evil, there was nothing going on here other than two e-friends meeting for drinks, munchies and general conversational goodness.

The expectations involved in getting together with a person with whom you have corresponded with via some form (other than standing in the same room chatting) are hard to pin down. On one hand, you don’t want to set yourself up for any rejection. Although, what you are being rejected about would be also odd to put your finger on.

Speaking for myself, I know that in situations like this I have a silly secret hope that the e-friendship will become something not so e.

It’s like how Pinocchio wanted to become a real boy when he really had no need. I mean, first of all, the guy was a living doll. He achieved so much more than any of his fellow puppets. Secondly, he didn’t really have to worry about much other than fire and termites. And yet, he wanted that extra step. He would sacrifice his partial invincibility to become a mushy walking sack of flesh. He wanted to make that leap of faith.

And so we meet with our fellow bloggers hoping to, at most, attain a new level of friendship. The very least we hope for is some short-term entertainment in the form of conversation.



So, What Happened?

I am a selfish bastard, so I will not go into too much detail regarding what the conversations were about.

Suffice to say that we got along like organic peanut butter and all-natural jam. She was what I expected her to be, and frankly, more.

It was not so much like meeting someone for the first time. It was more like catching up with an old friend. You might consider this somewhat cliché. Well, you can eat me, because that is what it was like.

We shared some wine, some munchies, and chatted like monkeys for the duration of the visit.

Originally, we had a two-and-a-half hour window in which to become acquainted and not kill each other. She had dinner plans with some colleagues, and I had a Halloween party to go to.

It turned out that her dinner plans were cancelled, so she had a lot more time to hang out.

This turned out to be cool, because my wife could meet us after her hair appointment, which is exactly what she did. In fact, they got along really well!

Even though I said I wouldn’t share too much of the conversation, some things are too good to keep to myself.



The Bluff

I had met Kris through Dave’s blog. If I remember correctly, I liked her comment and visited her blog. I commented on there, and challenged her in a counter-comment in Dave’s blog somehow (I think it had something to do with the five second rule or a misspelling of Naomi Watts).

Since that time, the three of us have visited and commented on each others blogs, and had a great time getting to know each other.

Naturally, it would have been even more awesome if Dave could have attended our evening out.

Alas, he resides in Ottawa, so a quick jaunt down the street was out of the question.

However, we did have the next best thing…


Kris: It’s really too bad Dave couldn’t make it out.
Jorge: Funny you should mention that. [Pulls out his cell phone] Let’s call Dave right now! [Dials number.]
Kris: You should tell him that I stood you up!
Jorge: What?
Kris:
Tell him I stood you up! [Giggling.]
Jorge: Ok.
[Dave picks up.]
Dave: Hello?
Jorge: Dude.
Dave: Hey. So, how is she?
Jorge: [Trying to sound angry.] I’m still sitting in the lobby waiting.
Dave: What?
Jorge: I’ve been sitting here for an hour. I can’t believe she’s not here yet.
[Kris is laughing into her hands so as not to make noise.]
Dave: That totally sucks, dude.
Jorge: Tell me about it. I’m pretty pissed. I mean, you’d think she would have called or something.
Dave: Yeah.
Jorge: I mean, she said let’s meet at five in the lobby of the Sheraton. So here I am. I was even early for fuck’s sake.
Dave: Sorry, mano.
Jorge: And so, here I am in the lobby of the – Oh shit…
Dave: What?
Jorge: Dude, I’m in the wrong place.
Dave: What?
Jorge: I’m in the Hilton. I got confused because this is where she said she was originally going to meet me.
Dave: No way! Are you serious?
Jorge: No. [Laughs.] Here’s Kris…
[Jorge hands the phone over to Kris.]
Kris: So, Jorge tells me you thought I’d have a moustache…



Puntification

At the place we were eating at, there was a little card-flip thing with some menu highlights at the end of the table, against the wall. Kris found the It’s the Bomb! (Try our Bombay Chicken) card to be hilarious. I, on the other hand, thought it a groaner…


Kris: So what is Canadian food like?
Jorge: What do you mean?
Kris: I mean, what’s different up here than where I come from?
Jorge: It’s mostly the same thing.
Kris: Seriously? I mean, look at that! [Pointing at the card-flip thing.] That is awesome!
Jorge: That is the worst pun ever!
Kris: No way! Is that Canadian food? I wonder who thinks up puns like that?
Jorge: Probably some American person.
Kris: Don’t you be startin’, now.
Jorge: Yeah?
Kris: Yeah. Bring it!



Best Quote of the Night

In reference to Dave and I…



Why are you guys even married? You have each other!

Kris – Toronto – October 28, 2005



The Upshot

It was a great time. I would take a bullet for this gal, because she is so freakin’ awesome.


The Other Side of the Story

You can read the version packed with lies here.



Your Haiku, You Whiner

Sparkling blue eyes
With intelligence and wit
Jorge likey Mama


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Gunslinger Hero Kris

Dave and Jorge Talk About the Gunslinger

My friend Adrian got us onto the Dark Tower series by Stephen King. We even started a little role-playing server based on the series.

So, when Dave sent me this link, I was pretty stoked.

A Dark Tower comic series? By Jae Lee? Sign me up!

Of course we discussed it…


[Jorge & Dave are on the phone with each other, each scrolling through the site, looking at the propect of a new Dark Tower Series.]
Jorge: This looks really cool.
Dave: Check out the art. It’s freaking sweet.
Jorge:
I could get into this.
Dave: Did you check out the art?
Jorge:
Well, it’s Jae Lee. His stuff is amazing.
Dave: Yeah.
Jorge:
Man, that’s all I need. Another series to buy.
Dave: [Laughs.]
Jorge: Do you think it’ll be worth getting?
Dave: It does look pretty sweet.
Jorge: Will you be getting it?
Dave: I was just planning on reading yours.
Jorge: Bastard.
Dave: [Laughs.]
Jorge: Definitely blogging this.
Dave: Nice.
Jorge: Well, it’s cool because I have something to write about now.
Dave: Yeah?
Jorge: Yeah. You provide the inspiration, man. You are my sunshine.
Dave: Awww. That’s nice.
Jorge: You are my own personal leprachaun.
Dave: Er…Okay.
Jorge: You are one of the shoemaker’s faeries.
Dave: Don’t blog that.


It was only as I typed this that I remembered that it’s the Shoemaker’s Elves. I am such a sofa king*.


A Hero Lives Here.

Josephine was nice enough to make me my own superhero picture. So I figured the least I could do was appear on Oprah



[Scene fades to Oprah, sitting on her chair. The theme music and applause slowly fade away.]
Oprah: My next guest is a recently created superhero. He’s a nice guy who rights wrongs, and saves kittens from trees. Please welcome Gunshield!
[Gunshield walks in, looking uncomfortable, puts down his shield and gun to awkardly hug Oprah, picks them up and then takes a seat.]
Oprah: Hi Gunshield, thanks for being on our show!
Gunshield: [Looking around, smiling broadly.] Hi Oprah! Thanks for having me on your show! It’s weird being here.
Oprah: Really?
Gunshield: Well, I don’t really feel like a celebrity.
Oprah: Why not? I mean, you are a hero. Heroes need to be admired and given air time to express their views.
Gunshield: I suppose so. A lot of people don’t like how I do things. I’m still pretty new, so it’s been tough.
Oprah: Nice gun by the way.
Gunshield: [Looking down and then turning red.] I knew this costume was too tight…
Oprah: [Taken aback.] Er…I was referring to your firearm.
Gunshield: [Putting shield on lap.] Oh! Uh…Geez. Sorry.
Oprah: [Looks nervously at camera crew.] That’s ok. So what kind of powers do you have?
Gunshield: Well, I do have the ability to fly. I’m invulnerable to harm. I can run very fast and have unbelievable strength. I also can shoot beams from my eyes.
Oprah: Really?
Gunshield: Yeah. The beams thing is something I don’t use, though. I get too many splinters under my eyelids.
Oprah: Oookay….So…why do you have a gun and shield?
Gunshield: Because they’re cool! I use the shield as my own extra large plate when going to the buffet lines in restaurants. You wouldn’t believe how much soup I can get in this thing. Besides, Flying-Invulnerable-Fast-Strong-Beameyes-Man sounds stupid.
Oprah: So, earlier you referred to your methods being questionable. What did you mean by that?
Gunshield: There was a cat in a tree. And it would not come down. And I didn’t really want to touch the cat, because the owner said it had fleas. So I put my shield down on the ground under the branch where the cat was sitting, and took aim…
Oprah: You shot at the cat?
Gunshield: Well, I tried to shoot the branch, so it would fall and I could catch the cat in the shield. But I am kinda new at it…
Oprah: What happened?
Gunshield: I hit the cat. [Audience gasps.] Kidding!
Oprah: That’s a relief.
Gunshield: I actually hit a bird. It was pretty bad there were feathers ev-MMPH!
Oprah: [Putting her hand on Gunshield’s mouth.] Well, that’s all the time we have for today…



Poor, poor Gunshield…


Meeting Kris!

Today I get to meet Kris.

If I don’t report back by Monday, please call the authorities.

I wore my titanium cup today, in case she really is a cyborg that hates men.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, read this.




* – This refers to the wonderful little prank you play on people, where you get them to read these words: I AM WE TODD DID. I AM SOFA KING WE TODD DID.

Book Meeting

Don’t Judge a Book…

So another gigantic lottery has come and gone.

Some lucky person has walked away with over fifty million dollars.

I received a scratch card from an insurance company in the mail yesteday. I didn’t bother to do anything with it at the time, so I brought it to work this morning with me.

I settled down, had some breakfast and took a gander at the card.

I scratched the card with my fork to reveal what I thought would be a try again or a better luck next time kind of message.

Instead, the following message was revealed…



GETAWAY


My heart skipped a beat.

I looked inside the card and read the message that said a vacation prize was up for grabs. A vaction prize worth up to six thousand dollars.

I began to sweat.

I logged into the website indicated on the card to see what I needed to do. It prompted me for a bunch of information, which I promptly filled out. After I submitted this data, a form popped up again, prompting me to enter the code word from the scratch card.

I typed in the word GETAWAY and prepared for my prize…



SORRY, THIS CODE WORD IS INVALID. BETTER LUCK NEXT TIME.


Yes.

So, I’m in a great mood now.

Bring on the junk mail!



A Meeting of the Minds

Tomorrow, I meet the Kris: blog celebrity and woman-about-town.

Dave and I always talk about how we have so many awesome bloggers on our links pages, and about how we would feel if we ever met them.

Admittedly (between the two of us), there are a number of stomach-butterfly-inducing scenarios revolving around meeting fellow bloggers

This may be one of them.

Kris recently met up with four other bloggers just a short while ago and had a great time. This just serves to increase the pressure on our get-together tomorrow night. I worry that I might come off as the human equivalent of Pablum*.

To combat this unease, I find it helpful to run through some scenarios in my mind before any meeting, be it work-related or non work-related.

Let’s see what we can see…



Scenario 1 – Jorge Loses His Comedic Timing

[Jorge walks into the meeting place where Kris specified. Jorge recognizes her and casually walks up. He’s feeling a little nervous. Kris stands up and smiles.]

Kris: Jorge? Nice to meet you!
Jorge: [His face twitches.] Your mama.
Kris: Huh?
Jorge: You wish!
Kris: Are you all right? You’re not making sense.
Jorge: [Giggling madly.] Cheque please.



Scenario 2 – Jorge Tries too Hard

[Jorge walks into the meeting place where Kris specified. Jorge recognizes her and casually walks up. He’s feeling a little nervous. He wanted to demonstrate all aspects of his personality to make a good impression. With this in mind, he decided to wear a three-piece suit, a fedora, a Superman cape and no shoes.]

Jorge: [Walking up to Kris.] Hi. You must be Kris.
Kris: [Shocked at his appearance. Fumbling words.] Pardon? I think you have me confused for someone else.
Jorge: [Removing his hat and scratching his head.] Well, you sure look like her. You’re even wearing the same clothes she said she’d be wearing.
Kris: [Hesitation gone now.] Nope. She left. She told me to tell you that she had to go home now. [To waiter.] Cheque Please!



Scenario 3 – The Unexpected

[Jorge walks into the meeting place where Kris specified. Jorge recognizes her and casually walks up. He’s feeling a little nervous. Kris stands up and takes the initiative.]

Kris: Are you Jorge?
Jorge: [Smiling.] Yes! Hi Kris. Nice to meet you! [Extends hand in greeting.]
Kris: [Takes Jorge’s hand. Squeezes with crushing force, causing Jorge to drop to his knees.] I have been sent from the future to kill you.
Jorge: [Wincing in pain.] WHAT? WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?

[Suddenly, several shots are fired. Kris loosens her grip as she has just been shot in the head. Jorge gawks. Kris’ head is splayed out in all directions, but slowly flowing back to re-form. A woman runs up, smoking gun in hand, and pulls Jorge away from the assassin. Jorge looks at his rescuer and sees…the real Kris!]

The Real Kris: [Looking at Jorge inquisitively.] Are you Jorge?
Jorge: [Rubbing the pain out of his crushed hand.] Yeah. What’s going on here?
The Real Kris: Come with me if you want to live.


Wow. The more scenarios I come up with, the more fun it seems this will be!

In all seriousness, I believe it will be a great time. It’s always fun meeting new folks, especially ones you sort of know from their writing (Ian & James – You guys rock. Jay – you are next!). I really enjoy reading Kris‘ work, and so I have a great deal of respect for her**.

I’ll post about it over the weekend if I can. Otherwise, it will be Monday.




* – Insult courtesy of Dave. He thought this up just for me.
** – Do yourself a favour and go read her blog! You’ll know what I’m talking about when you do.

Spam Think Canadian

Spam Names

And so, another weekend has come and gone.

I was perusing my junk mail folder last night and picked out the following group of entertaining spam originator names.

Rather than just listing them, I’ve decided to create a little office scenario, and assign some personality to each fake name.

I think it’s a lot more entertaining this way…


Simmering G. Overseers – The perpetual angry boss. Mrs. Overseers is a micromanager’s micromanager. Always looking over the shoulder of her underlings, she stalks about the office, her face a slight reddish twinge, grinding her teeth and exuding steam from her brain.

Crumbliest G. Tabulating – This poor young soul is overworked and underpaid. Working as Mrs. Overseers’ accountant, he’s constantly falling apart from the pressure that is brought by her constant surveillance.

Cattails B. Unkempt – This bookish archivist works long hours for low pay. Her frizzy hair and messy attire are a step towards explaining the problems the office is having locating any documents from before the previous month. Why so unkempt? Too much time in the garden, taking care of “weeds”.

Compensations T. Pet – This payroll worker is the apple of everyone’s eye. She does her job well and looks great to boot. Nobody can place her exotic accent, nor can they figure out her heritage from her other-worldy, beautiful appearance. To the untrained eye it appears that she is under the sway of the higher management types. However, upon closer inspection, it is she who leads them all with a short leash.

Roomful E. Furthest – This portly gentleman has been cursed with a biological weight problem. As if this wasn’t bad enough, he also seems to emit a noxious odour that is repugnant to all but the toughest flies. Sitting low on the totem pole, one would think him assigned to a cubicle like everyone else. However, due to both of his unfortunate traits, he has been assigned to his own office on the opposite side of the building from everyone else.

Waxwing M. Supremacist – The president of our motley crew. His creepy demeanor, racist attitude and oily appearance spook a lot of the people, but none more than the women who work in the office. They are constantly avoiding his lecherous gaze and busy hands. The only one in the office not afraid of him is Miss Pet, who seems to cause him some distress. He thinks her an extremely attractive women, yet she is a “foreigner”. He tends to keep his distance from her.

Benito M. Feliciano – Salesman extraordinaire. This curly-haired adonis walks about in his expensive suits and highly-polished shoes. He is the paragon of confidence. His muscled body apparent beneath his threads. The women in the office swoon when he walks by. Ironically, he only has eyes for young Mr. Tabulating…

Trumpeting O. Sleet – She is the receptionist and switchboard operator all rolled into a sweaty package. She’s never been able to figure out why she gets the cold sweats all the time. It’s not that she’s nervous, nor is she afraid of anything (except Waxwing, who really gets under her skin). No. It’s just one of those mysteries she can’t figure out. The rest of the office is glad that she’s around. Due to her loud voice, they save on public address systems.

Jesus Mayo – The wildcard. He doesn’t actually work in the office, but rather at the deli down the street. A humble man, bearded, in casual clothes, he can make the most heavenly sandwiches in the city. People who eat his food tend to start seeing auras and feeling really groovy. As of yet, no one has ever caught the street urchins transporting large amounts of E into his pantry.


And there we have it. Our dysfunctional office scenario.

I actually quite enjoyed that. I might do that again if the names that appear in my junk mail folder are as interesting as these.



Something To Think About

I’ve been watching a few people lately who have made a career out of changing careers. While I admire their tenacity, I’ve discovered that they’ve painted themselves into a corner by earning themselves a nomadic reputation.

What ever happened to having an open mind about what you are doing right now?

Sometimes the best journeys are the ones inside that start with what you know.

Chasing your dreams can be good. Just make sure to look at the ground every once in a while, to make sure you avoid those nasty cliffs.



A Canadian Project

A thought has been working itself through my brain for the last week or so.

I’ve spoken to Ian and Dave about it. I’ve also dropped hints to Cat.

If anyone is curious about this endeavour, please e-mail me.

I’d post the idea here, but I only really want serious inquiries, and I really want to keep it quiet until it’s done.

Jorge’s Guide to Toronto – II

The Journey Continues…

Welcome back to my guide to the city I live in.

In this chapter, I will be dealing with a few more cultures, as well as some extra points you may want to consider.

Landmarks are an important part of travel. They are usually famous places that you can use as a point of reference, so you don’t get lost. You can also learn interesting things about the history of the city from some of the major landmarks, as steps have been taken to ensure that information is posted at these places. Landmarks can also make up part of the unique skyline of the city.

These skylines are like fingerprints. Every major city has a recognizable skyline. If you don’t know what the skyline of your city looks like, just go to a book shop or souvenier store and check out some postcards. A pattern will make itself apparent.

Toronto is no exception. In fact, it has one of the most recognizable skylines of any city in the world…



Is That a Landmark Or Are You Just Happy to See Me?

I have come to the conclusion that if the city of Toronto was a gender, it would be male. I’m not referring to the smell, or stuff lying all over the place. No, I am referring to the giant penis along the lakeshore in our downtown core.

The CN Tower was first conceived as a communications platform (radio and television), a testatment to Canadian ingenuity and probably a healthy dash of my-dad-can-beat-up-your-dad machismo.

From what I gather, the observation decks were added later on in the plan. Construction of the CN Tower was worked on non-stop for over three years. When it was finally completed, it was a sight to behold.

On top of being a communications nexus and observation tower, it also acts as an entertainment centre, complete with revolving restaurant and other goodies. If you decide to try to stand on the transparent floor and pretend you are Superman (the floor looks down several hundred metres to the cold, hard ground below), make sure you wear a diaper.

Visit the CN Tower if you ever find yourself in the neighbourhood. You won’t be disappointed. Following are two links to more information…



Actually, I just checked what I wrote against the Wikipedia entry and I was right on the money! Not that I would have changed anything if was wrong…



Portuguese

There are two major subgroups in this category: European and Brazilian. Since I haven’t been able to find the geographical distribution to indicate distinction, I’ve thrown them both into one category.

This could be considered a faux-pas, as I have observed that the older generations of European and Brazilian Portuguese people have some kind of long-standing feud based on something lost to memory. The younger generations don’t, though, which makes visiting these parts of town a lot more comfortable.

Another interesting distinction is the language. While they both speak Portuguese, they each have their own variations. European Portuguese is a clipped, sharp-sounding latinesque language. The Brazilian version, on the other hand, is softer and more sultry.

Vocabulary is also tricky. A Brazilian acquaintance of mine told me once that he was in Portugal, and someone asked him (in European Portuguese) to stand in a queue to wait for the banker. In Brazilian, the European word for queue translates to homosexual. Needless to say my acquaintance was momentarily taken aback. Brazilian contains a lot of slang, usually double meanings of a sexual nature. Hell, I think every word in Brazilian contains some sexual connotation.

From my observations, there are two major sections of the city that can be classified as Portuguese


  • Bloor St W from Ossington to Dufferin

  • Dundas St W from Ossington to Lansdowne


These neighbourhoods have some great little markets to do grocery shopping, as well as a lot of bakeries. You can’t visit one of these neighbourhoods without trying one of the infamous Portuguese custard tarts called pasteis de nata. These heavenly baked treats simply melt in your mouth. Each bakery and coffee shop has their own unique flavour. Ironically, in my opinion, the best pasteis de nata can be attained at Caldense, which is nowhere near the neighbourhoods listed above. These tarts are almost if not as good as the original pasteis from Belém in Porgugal.

When strolling around in these areas, you might also be lucky enough to see a game of Capoeira in progress. Capoeira is a Brazilian martial art, which you can read about here. You should join in the music by clapping to the rhythm (if those in the circle are clapping). Don’t stand too close to the inner circle surrounding the action, though. You might be asked to play.

Every lunch and dinner hour are bustling around these neighbourhoods. Weekends, there are probably even more people out for walks with their families, chatting with neighbours, and so on. Yes, in true Europen fashion, there are also old men wearing hats, playing cards and possibly soccer.





Index

  1. Introduction, Italian, Chinese

  2. CN Tower, Portuguese

  3. TTC, Greek

  4. Zanta, Ukrainian

A Quick Thought: Love

A Quick Thought

I was at my friend Leah‘s site last night, where she posted a question asking what love is.

I typed my answer in a comment.

I wanted to touch on the more active nature of the feelings around love. I bounced the comment off a few people and then refined it to reach something a little more widely understandable.

This is what I came up with (add your own thoughts in the comment section if you like)…


“You place all your faith in something beyond your senses and yet, through your will, it becomes more solid than stone.”


Hai-Kuul – Oct 20, 2005

More n’ More (Requested by princess_castle)
Yet another storm
Followed by a hurricane
Too much suffering


Stray Dogs (Requested by princess_castle)
Abandoned puppies
Left to their own devices
Trying to survive


Attitude (Requested by princess_castle)
What’s inside your mind
Can make itself apparent
In curious ways


Sleeping Bags (Requested by princess_castle)
Curled up and stock still
Tucked in the warmest blankets
Old ladies sleeping


O Well (Has been requested before by princess_castle)


What Else? (Requested by princess_castle)
So many choices
How many do we need for
True variety?




*Remember, you can submit a topic to inspire your very own Haiku Poem by clicking here. You can read about Hai-Kuul here.