Where you can read the relatively rational ramblings of a silly half-monkey, half-boy. This freak of nature is named Joel. He also responds to the name 'Bart Wang'.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

I am having one of those rare relaxing and productive days. I'm currently rocking out to Living Sacrifice. Egads... Every time I throw on their album, Reborn, I cannot keep from moving. The first track, Reborn Empowered, has to be one of the greatest metal songs of all-time. In fact, I just left the keyboard in order to shake my ass in the spare bedroom to it. Blondel, back me up on this one... Lapsley, I'm not sure if you were still into them by the time this record came out. Come to think of it, did you ever like LS? I mean, their really old stuff was way too death metal for me. I know you liked the hair metal. You weren't crowned 'King of the Mullet' for no reason!
Yeah, so back to me... Melanie & I went to her parents' house last night for a great meal. Her mom always puts out a large spread that she spends a really long time planning and preparing. I ate a pile of ham, garlic mashed potatoes, broccoli (believe it or not, I now LOVE broccoli - with or without cheese or dip) and some of the largest helpings of dessert ever seen by human eyes. Melanie's mom is always pushing multiple servings on me. Good thing I worked out with Chad & Eric earlier in the day. We left there after 9PM and just came home. Melanie went to sleep because she is working today. I stayed up and watched the untitled cut of 'Almost Famous'. That movie makes me love music more each time I watch it. If you haven't seen the extended cut, let me know and I'll watch it with you or lend it to you.
Headed out to church this morning and met up with my homie, Jon Masson. Jon's a nutbar - he was up last night until 2AM after playing ice hockey into the wee hours and then got up to attend his parents' church's sunrise (see: mentally ill) service at 7:30AM. He then proceeded down the QEW from Oakville to Ancaster for church at 10AM. He's obviously a saint. Hahaha. Also attending was Mike "The Animal" Andres, whom I have not seen in quite some time but with whom am always pleased to chat. Then, sitting behind me, was an old acquaintance from high school, Lorie Solvsten. Side bar - I thought of her yesterday because I heard 'Glycerine' by Bush on the radio, which she played in the high school talent show in 1996. Wacky. Turns out she is neighbours with Eric "The Taxman" and Chad, who told her about the church.
Today's message at church was really good, looking at Romans 8. Bruxy talked about the meaning for Christ followers of looking to the Spirit rather than the law and the freedom that Jesus has offered us from sin/bad choices/the flesh/etc. It was really encouraging. We're not bound to making bad decisions and doing things we know we shouldn't do because Jesus died and took away sin's power. Thanks, Jesus! A very poignant and encouraging message for Easter Sunday. The next sermon series is on the Da Vinci Code book. Check it out if you're interested.
After church, I headed out to the in-laws to drop off my newly-acquired slide projector. My dad didn't want the old 8mm film projector (and all our old home movies) or the slide projector (and the accompanying slides) so I took them. I am essentially the keeper of my family's history. Since we're not having kids, it'll die with me and pass on to my sister and any kids they may have (if they make such a crazy decision - hahaha!). Melanie's dad was looking for a slide projector so I lent it to him. Maybe he can figure out how to work it for me.
Once home, I vacuumed out my car of all the stones and crud that has built up over the winter. I owe my dad a big 'thanks' for the industrial vacuum he bought us back when we moved in to our house. It's really handy. I hope to get my car shampooed and tidied up sometime in the near future. Then I cleaned up in the house, putting boxes and excess stuff up in the attic. Thank goodness for that attic because the living space in our house is certainly not big enough for everything we own. Neither Melanie and I like to throw out everything and we keep things of sentimental value to us. Plus I'm just one of those psychos who believes in purchasing things BEFORE I need them, and the attic provides some much needed storage.
A bunch of tasks completed before my holidays officially begin! Woo hoo! Melanie got some time off at the end of April so I've got to plan for our trip to New Jersey to see the Further Seems Forever reunion show and our friends, Bill & Ronee. I hope it all works out ideally. I'd like to spend some time in Wildwood again but it's a pretty long drive for only a couple days. We'll see how it works. I should really call ol' William to see what the dealie is.
I hope your Easter long weeked has been good and that you work for the government (like me!) and have Easter Monday off! I love you all.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

I'm up late, yet again. I've been chatting online with babes all day. Ok, I actually mean, with some friends that I don't get to talk to often like Leanne Lewis/Muir, Darryl "Pimp" Timko, Mike "The Animal" Andres and Todd "My poop is" Brown. I downloaded some of the new Lifehouse tracks but haven't given then a full listen because I also downloaded the whole new Mae record, 'The Everglow'. It's so great. And don't give me any crap about downloading stuff. While I was chatting with Darryl, I ordered us both a copy from the label so I've bought it. Screw off, okay!??!
What I have been listening to constantly though is a song called 'Wedding Dress' by a boy named Derek Webb. Derek was in a band called Caedmon's Call. I never had any of their music. I hear they were good. Whatever. In the second lecture I have from Don Miller, he references this song. Holy crap... I've basically had it on repeat for the last hour. It's such a great song. The music bears a striking similarity to the song 'Fiddler's Green' by the Tragically Hip but the lyrics slay me. SOOOOOOOOOOO great. You have to hear this tune. Until you do, I will post the lyrics. It's sung from the perspective of the Bride (the church) to the Groom (Jesus). Heart-breakingly beautiful.

Wedding Dress
(words and music by derek webb)

if you could love me as a wife
and for my wedding gift, your life
should that be all i’ll ever need
or is there more i’m looking for

and should i read between the lines
and look for blessings in disguise
to make me handsome, rich, and wise
is that really what you want

i am a whore i do confess
but i put you on just like a wedding dress
and i run down the aisle
i’m a prodigal with no way home
but i put you on just like a ring of gold
and i run down the aisle to you

so could you love this bastard child
though i don’t trust you to provide
with one hand in a pot of gold
and with the other in your side
i am so easily satisfied
by the call of lovers less wild
that i would take a little cash
over your very flesh and blood

i am a whore i do confess
but i put you on just like a wedding dress
and i run down the aisle
i’m a prodigal with no way home
but i put you on just like a ring of gold
and i run down the aisle to you

because money cannot buy
a husband’s jealous eye
when you have knowingly deceived his wife

Sunday, March 20, 2005

This was a busy weekend for the Joelinator. Had a big pile of people in our little house on Friday night. We gabbed a lot, ate too much and had a good time. We watched 'Napoleon Dynamite', which was more appreciated by some than others. Hahaha. Melanie had Melanie Ramsay down from Smith's Falls as well as Karen Golledge from that little town whose name escapes me as I type this. Crap... Sorry, Karen. Your town just doesn't rank in my mind. They had a good time together, I'm told.
Saturday had the Taxman and I pumping up. I actually noticed some increase in muscle in my chest now. I've always looked like a prepubescent boy (or girl, for that matter) but now I've got a little definition. Thanks, Eric! He's been my motivation and inspiration. Anyone want to listen to Chicago "17"? In the evening, Mike, Nathan, Jon and I hit the Staircase Theatre to watch 'What The Bleep Do We Know?' It was really different - thought-provoking, challenging and interesting. We went out for food later and talked about it a lot, which shows it was a good movie. Not all sane or consistent but good nonetheless. Or can I really say that it was good? That's what my peptides tell me anyhow. Watch the movie and you'll understand.
Today was Sunday, which found us at church. The sermon was, as usual, really good. I watched 'Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind' this afternoon. Melanie watched parts of it but was in and out of consciousness during the film. Hahaha.
We keep getting the Sunday Sun for free. I find it every Sunday on my driveway. I usually throw it out immediately (the Toronto Sun is not known as a reputable paper and I have little interest in it). For some reason, I read it today though. I found this interesting article that I wanted to share with everyone I know (if you're Canadian, at least). It's common knowledge that Christians vote for the Conservative party. If you're American, they're similar to the Republicans. Anyhow, in both cases, Christians put all of their voting weight behind these parties because they believe they will 'stand up for morality and what is right', in spite of evidence to the contrary. In most situations, 'morality' means 'abortion and gay rights/same sex marriage'. I've believed for quite some time that the right wing parties don't give a shit about these issues except in lip service for votes. Now, they've finally admitted it. I'll leave you with the article I found. It's time to change your party allegiance, folks.

Abortion debate shot down

Maria McClintock

Toronto Sun - Sunday, March 20, 2005

Ottawa Bureau

The Conservative party moved closed to the moderate middle yesterday after convention delegates defeated many Reform-era policies and shot down attempts to re-activate the debate on abortion.

Throughout the policy debate in Montreal it was clear the 3,000 party faithful heard the signal sent by leader Stephen Harper in his keynote speech Friday night – that he would not legislate abortion, and that party members should focus on issues that Canadians care about.

Despite that, the door remains open for MPs to bring forward legislation in the Commons on any issue they choose.

Slim margin

New Brunswick delegate Nargis Kheraj was pleased the members shot down the abortion motion although it was by a slim margin.

“This battle has been fought before. Women have been fighting this for a hundred years … we do not need to revisit it,” said Kheraj, who urged delegates to end the debate on abortion once and for all.

“I’m really pleased we really got to the point, that we have agreed that abortion has no business being on our platform.”

Other motions on euthanasia, referendums and the notion of recall of MPs were all defeated, a signal party members want to convince Canadians the party is prepared to have more mainstream policies on its books.

While there was an apparent shift, it ground to a halt on the divisive issue of same sex marriage. An overwhelming 75% of delegates voted in favour of a Conservative government introducing legislation to keep the traditional definition of marriage – a stand MP Belinda Stronach said will have political implications on the party.

“We are all here because we want to form government. We want to broaden the base of support, we want to be inclusive, and we want to form a pan-Canadian party,” Stronach said following the vote.

‘I want to win’

“Yes, I am worried about the political impact that this will have on the party. I’m in this because I want to win and I believe we must show that we are an open and inclusive party.”

Attempts to establish a youth wing of the party were also shot down after a lengthy debate, so the party will continue with the status quo of developing its campus clubs at universities and colleges.

Also removed from the party’s platform were planks calling for the creation of a citizens’ assembly to adopt proportional representation, holding elections on fixed dates, referendums for constitutional amendments and general referendums for issues of national importance.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Ever have those days where you disgust yourself as a result of the emissions you make? Today is that day, my friends. I disgust myself. And I would disgust you but it's unlikely I would allow myself to be so carefree (or would it be 'careless') as to torture you with this stuff. Unless you're name is Melanie and you're married to me. In that case, honey, prepare for a visit to Gross City! Last night, when I went to bed at the idiotic hour of 3 A.M., I released a cloud in bed. It was so wretched that I giggled to myself and thought how mean/funny it would be if the odour awakened my darling bride. Fortunately for her (and, I suppose, me), she didn't wake up. I think Melanie could sleep through a plane crash - in our living room.
I went to church this morning and it rocked. Afterward, Nathan Walz and I joined up with some folks from our homechurch at Christian Chicken (a.k.a. Swiss Chalet). It was surprisingly good. I hold a low opinion of Swiss Chalet because of their small portions at a high cost (in my opinion). Then we hit up Costco and I bought more stuff. A couple boxes of cereal, a Bruce Springsteen box set for only $22 (three of his first four albums - Greetings From Asbury Park, NJ, The Wild, The Innocent & The E Street Shuffle & Darkness On The Edge Of Town!!!), some protein bars and a book on financial planning. I think I'd like to become a financial planner. Taxman and I could open up our own business, help people get out of debt and live better financial lives and then do whatever we want.
Speaking of the Taxman, he lost his dad yesterday. His dad had been sick last year but was recovering very well by all accounts. He went suddenly and no one even knew. Pray for him, his brother Chad, his sister Lori and their mom, Hope. It really, really, really sucks. It's been on my mind for the past two days, frequently praying for them and wishing there was something miraculous I could do. I suppose praying is pretty miraculous when I think about it. God, be with my friends as they mourn. Help me and others to care for them. Comfort them like only You can.

Monday, March 07, 2005

I cannot allow this to continue. Dave Blondel will push me to update my blog regularly. That dude's a writing machine lately! Do I really need more motivation than trying to keep up with the likes of him? Yes. Yes, I do. And it comes in the form of Jonathan Anderson. He actually reads the garbage we write. Jon is a wise man. He recognizes brilliance when he sees it. He took a picture of me so he can see brilliance all day, every day. Ok, that's a lie. He can see incompetence all day, every day. And maybe even some incontinence. Oh, wait, no, that's not me, that's the Professor.
This is how my weekend went down. Friday night found me doing stuff. Things and stuff. I honestly don't remember what I did on Friday night. Oh, wait, yes, that's it. I was out on a case in the early evening with my colleague (she apprehended a newborn baby) and that kiboshed my normal Friday night routine of working out with the Taxman (a.k.a. Eric Tomlinson). Shoot... I don't remember what I did on Friday night. I must have spent it with Melanie. Crap. Oh well, on to Saturday!
Saturday morning allowed me to return to my routine of getting buff with Taxman and Chad. Maybe not buff. Ok, it's probably more that I'm preventing myself from getting really fat. I need to work out a fair bit more before I can concern myself with being buff. After pumping iron, I came home and kicked it for a while. I set up the house with enough beds for a small rock band because, well, a small rock band was sleeping over that night. Melanie went to Toronto to celebrate her friend's birthday (happy birthday, Karen!) and I went in the evening to hang with one Mr. Michael Vandermark.
We were checking out Jonathan Inc., indie rock heroes of Vancouver, B.C. who were in southern Ontario for Canadian Music Week. They were playing at this little hole-in-the-wall in Brantford, where Mike is living now. Before we went to see the J.I. crew, we hit up Admiral Submarine. I went there once years and years ago when I used to hang with the Dave Lapsley-Jed & Nate Benoit-Jeff Bradley-Darren Conley crew. I know, that's a really lame name for a gang. Anyhow, I remembered this place made food for large stomaches, though the decor left much (if not everything) to be desired. It was as I remembered. Holy crap. The large fries were more than both Mike and I could eat so I think we threw out half of them (I hate myself for that). The hamburgers consisted of two large patties on a bun about the size of your face. Unless your face is the like Laurie Castellani's, in which case it would be twice as big as your face. I kid you not. It was glorious and disgusting at the same time. Mike has already stated he will never go there again but I think (and hope) I might be able to convince him.
We made our way over to the Ford Plant, which turned out to be a cool place for a show. It was a fond reunion with Mr. Anderson and Michelle Grunert and I finally got to meet the infamous Jonathan Brotherton and Glenn D'Cruze. They kicked ass at the show, took names and then provided some more beatdowns. I feel like a weirdo because they're my friends and yet I love their band as if I had never met them. I could listen to the last two records on repeat for days. The bands that followed were, surprisingly, really good. Brian Borcherdt
played a killer set that had us all enthralled. Jon A. pointed out that Brian's drummer also plays for Blue Rodeo. The other band we stayed for was Kepler, who also were very good. This was an unusually good night of music. I never anticipate the majority of bands on a bill to be good. I was pleased. Mike was pleased. The J.I. crew enjoyed it as well.
I dropped Mike off and headed back home. Melanie was asleep when I arrived so I read a bit of Kalle Lasn's book, Culture Jam, sent to me by my good friend, Bill Power. It seems like it's going to be a really good book. I was dead-tired so I laid down on the couch until the small rock band arrived. They unloaded everything into the front room before hitting the sack for one last night in Ontario.
On Sunday, Melanie was up bright and early to hit up church and I got up soon thereafter. Jon B. was first conscious and we shot the breeze a bit. He was trying to convince me that having kids doesn't suck but I wasn't buying it . Then it was Michelle's turn to regain consciousness. Finally, Jon A. and Glenn D. got their lazy asses up. Both times Jon has slept at my house, he's awakened with a shirt over his face. That must get crazy hot and uncomfortable. Plus it looks like he has a shirt for a face. That's just crazy! Glenn slept in a chair while the rest of us watched the wedding video. I also showed them Doug Nagy's performace in the late morning. Everyone loves Doug! Around noon, it was time for the sad farewells and they drove off in the rental to return to the airport for the flight back to B.C. It's always a pleasure seeing them and I hope to spend more time with them next time.
Sunday afternoon had Melanie and I tasting the delicious brunch buffet at the Olde Powerhouse in Stoney Creek We went shopping and got a pile of stuff. During the week, Melanie and her dad has stained and assembled our new kitchen island, which is kick-asser. It looks awesome. The weekend went by far too quickly.
I did our taxes today and can't wait to get that nice, juicy return. It will all go to pay down debts! Woo hoo! Got to talk to Ben Gosling, who is visiting from Japan. He's been having a crazy year while working over there. It's late and I have to sleep in a bad way. Didn't get enough this weekend. I did, however, get enough baked Cheetos Crunchits. Those things are damn good. Well, you have a good day. I'm outta here.
If you're dead-bored, check out my other site here. It's got some of my humourous ramblings but, most importantly, pictures of my fine ass. You can use them as your desktop, if you want. PEACE!