I was at my Stagette party the other night cutting into a cake which had been tattooed with my grade eight St Paul’s school picture with my curled and spiky bangs and a caption saying ” I’m getting married!” when someone said ” oh my god did you hear about what happened to.?”. I knew by the look on their face it was something horrific so I cut them off at the pass before they could say anything else, I said it’s my stagette and I don’t want to hear about it. The unsaid was the first thing I thought about when I woke up the next morning , that and Advil but I knew I wasn’t ready, so I turned off the news, crawled back into bed and went back to sleep. Yesterday however there was no escape from the horrible story of poor Tim Mclean on the bus and his sudden, tragic and grotesque murder. His death seemed to rid people of their numbness in a way that almost nothing does anymore. I think it made us all feel vulnerable, even when we believe we are safe minding our own business. A jumpy person at the best of time, yesterday I was a full on neurotic, scared to look people in the eye and more scared not to and last night after playing a gig with Spirit Of The West about two and a half hours north of Toronto I entered the city like I was beginning a video game, with people popping onto the street on their bikes and flagging down crashing cabs after Caribana , dogs fighting and cats mating. I felt like I’d taken the brown acid and everyone was out to get me. At about three in the morning I dropped off my guitar player after he’d regaled me about the two times he’d gotten shot at in Toronto and I actually ducked when a fire truck and a police car screeched passed me just a few blocks from my house. I was so spooked I pulled in right front of my house knowing ten minutes later I was going to get a ticket but I wanted to be in the safety of my home immediately. When I clicked online for the news this morning I was weepy to see stories about Tim Mclean’s life and the person he was instead of how he died, what I didn’t expect to see was that the fire truck and police car that had passed me were on their way to find a little seven year old girl who was killed by her guardian just down the street from me and back into bed I crawled for the third day in a row. I don’t think I’ll be turning on the news for quite some time.
It’s just a few weeks until the Olympics. What should be the worlds expression of living in harmony with a common end goal, where sportsmanship is king and losers are defined only by not cheering for the winners has a huge rain cloud hovering overhead. It marks decades of training by athletes, miles of sacrifice and enough Gatorade to quench the thirst of the world. I heard on the radio that visibility in Beijing yesterday was only half a kilometre, maybe that’s a good thing because if we could actually see further we would see the real wounds of Tibet, once a world of spiritual freedom which is being crushed by an iron grip. Somehow though the earth powers that be have chosen to overlook this as if we are so used to people being oppressed that we just shrug our shoulders and accept it even though we don’t like it. Now it’s widely reported that black people are not allowed in bars in Beijing, being denied or thrown out and told not to come back- whoa stop the presses! Reading this led me on a google goose chase where I found a ton of articles backing up this claim and the same amount refuting this story saying the police weren’t banning black people just keeping a closer eye on them. “A closer eye on them”, you have got to be kidding me, it feels like we are back in the dark ages when Elizabeth Hasselback cried after scuffling with Whoppi Goldberg on The View because Elizabeth believes racism can be solved by refusing to say one particular word. Oh sorry that was just a few weeks ago, my mistake, really it feels like the world is going to hell in a hand basket. The biggest problem we have in North America pertaining to racism is that a such a large amount of people don’t believe it exists anymore and refuse to discuss it in the present tense . It’s like breaking your arm, going to a doctor, getting it fixed up, but you didn’t leave the cast on long enough, had to go back to work, you keep using the same arm day in day out and all it feels is sore, some days more inflamed then others. Finally you go back to the doctor and he says that in order for it to heal properly they’ve got to break it again and start all over. In a way that’s what Obama is doing, setting things in motion so we too can heal properly and not a moment too soon.
I have already admitted that I am “that person” , the person who as their wedding approaches can think of nothing else and is in a fact a little bit obsessed, so I am just going to go for it without an ounce of guilt. For the second time in my life I have a list of things to guide me and it seems that as I check one thing off another unravels, because no matter how the saying goes, sometimes when God closes a door, he shuts the window too. We have tried as hard as we can to make this a personal ceremony so when I learned that a dear family friend who is also a catholic priest was coming up for my wedding I was beyond excited that someone who had known me since I was a baby would be the one the marry us. It was all coming together really, the food, the music and the veil, most of the details taken care of. Kim or as she likes to call herself these days “ The MOH” checked out city hall and how to get a permit for a non resident to officiate the marriage, it was to be a piece of cake, a phone call, a sheet of paper, a pen and voila. I was really excited about incorporating the faith that I was raised and schooled in ( all hail to Holy Heart) and my fiancé although an agnostic was excited for me (another reason why I love him). Last thing I heard was that the church was trying to figure out ways to get young people back in the church, I don’t know, maybe I’m not considered young anymore because I wanted it to be a huge part of the biggest day of my life and it seems it wanted no part of me. It turns out that because I wasn’t getting married in an actual physical church a priest simply would not be allowed to marry me, when I casually mentioned it to the lady in the office of the archdiocese she actually gasped to the point where I seriously considered calling an ambulance for her. Now I am left frantically searching the internet for someone who looks friendly and somewhat spiritual in their picture to come and marry us, I think it’s really sad when Carrot Top could marry us and not someone whom I love and care about. All I’m saying is that the church is going to miss one hell of a party.