Post-Valentine’s Day 2016

“Puberty destroys Valentine’s Day.” Unknown man said to the barista. “I’d rather be single than be in a bad relationship. And I think most people if they thought about it would prefer that too.” He continued, “When we are mature and we find someone is nice but we realize that there isn’t a connection, we then can make the decision to be friends instead.”

Amen to that, unshaven, dishevelled man who clearly lives on his own. And I mean that in the most endearing manner. The same could be said for me, in my high top kicks, flannel shirt, and 5 year old faded jeans. I can’t remember if I washed my face in the morning. A-T-T-R-A-C-T-I-V-E!

I was struggling to focus on reading my book, the conversation behind me diverted towards the philosophy of changing political beliefs, “Often time as people age they become more right-wing rather than changing their beliefs from right-wing to left-wing.”

I nod to myself, according to Pew Research, the older generation today in the US is certainly more conservative on the extreme.

But not to get political, that was the start to my Valentine’s Day 2016. I can pretend to dislike Valentine’s Day but the fact is I rather like it. It is the one day out of the year that complete strangers are compelled to talk to one another about their beliefs on love and relationships and … politics.

There is that undertone of love gone wrong, a memory of a past relationship not quite reconciled, a little baggage here and there and it’s ok to share in riddles.

We are connected through our experience of pain?

I’ve yet to overhear complete strangers on Valentine’s Day discuss relationship stories of great love and gain.

But perhaps I simply need a new coffee shop! 🙂

Italy, here I come, don’t let me down.

A Coffee Shop Date

A Coffee Shop Date

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It had to be their first date. It seemed they’d not met before, at least not in person. Perhaps not even on “the internet” *gasp*. Maybe he responded to a newspaper ad, or maybe she did?

Or could this be a blind date, set up by two of their best-friends who knew they’d “click”.

I can’t be certain how they found themselves sitting across from each other, sharing nothing but dialogue, but there they were.

Updating each other on the most intimate details of their lives in a public space:

“How old are you.”

“Do you have siblings?”

“Do you have a job?”

His opening lines upon settling into their unforgiving wooden chairs, hot drinks in hand,

“Literally I can rip apart a house”

“If there is a problem, I can fix it right away.”

Then he moved on to the brass-tacks on why he possessed such mad-skills setting himself up for date number two,

“The job market was tough; I voluntarily left my position in the finance industry, other people had children and mortgages and I had an opportunity to work with my uncle.”

His uncle isn’t just a contractor. He’s a Valentino contractor. He’s the contractor everyone wants to hire and everyone wants to work for. They wear tuxedos when they work, and dust? Did someone say dust? Dust is non-existent under his uncle’s watchful eye. It’s more like magic than it is like actual hard work contracting.

Did he learn. He learned all the trades while working for his uncle. How to rewire a house, install everything from insulation, drywall, shingles, bricks, roofing, lawns, driveways, duct work, cement, foundations. After 2 years of tutelage under his uncles watchful eye, you name it, he learned it and a pro he is! All while wearing a sharply pressed, dust-free tuxedo.

She blissfully watched him. Taken by his oratory prowess and general expertise, not one word escaped her lips. She leaned into the table to get a little closer to the story and probably to him too.

After his stint with uncle Valentino he moved on to the shipping and receiving industry. And boy, he’s taken the industry like a storm.

Yes-sir-ree. It took him 6 months to turn around that loading dock. Counting boxes on skids is hard work, so is reducing shrinkage, checking for damaged goods…too many acronyms and terms for me to remember. The story goes that he was promoted to be come their leading Sales Agent!

Top grossing Sales Agent to be correct and are we surprised?

I can see him selling me something, maybe not a date, but he could definitely sell me some shipping if that’s what I needed.

His closing lines to seal in date number two with his lovely doe eyed lady,

“If she shows up in daisy dukes,” rolls his eyes, “she might well as not have showed up at all”, and continues pointing at himself “see what I am wearing, jeans, sports jacket and a nice collared shirt,” he self-congratulates himself, “why can’t a girl just show up in modest clothing.”

She quickly jumps in not wanting his disapproval, equally eager for date number two and points out, “yes, like I wore my yellow coloured khaki’s and this smart, light-purple sweater set.”

How old were these two potential remote-controlled lovebirds?

25.

And how do I join their cool club?

I wore a ratty sweatshirt and jeans, and I am eavesdropping!! Do I make the cut?

Maybe.

Horrible Joe

Horrible Joe

IMG-20121130-00925.jpgHorrible Joe is a regular at the coffee shop. I have likely encountered Horrible Joe unbeknown to myself.

How he landed his nickname, I can only imagine.

One of Horrible Joe’s past-times, besides hanging out at the coffee shop are his scratch tickets.

A week ago Horrible Joe won a significant amount of money from one of his tickets.

What do the coffee shop ladies feel about Horrible Joe?

“The day he won he gave each of us a $50 tip. I don’t call him Horrible Joe anymore, maybe just a little bad…”

The Curious First Date

Today at the coffee shop I am within earshot of a first date. I am amused. First dates are tricky business.

This particular first date is…………..hard to keep up with!!

“How tall are you?”

“6’3″, but I am the shortest of the guys in my family.”

“Right, well that’s a good height anything taller than 6’4″ is just too tall.”

“Well you are pretty tall yourself.”

“I am and I am wearing flats,” as she brings her foot from under the table up to the seat of her chair to show off her flat heel.

He nods in approval. I wish I could see the expression on his face.

She’s a pretty girl, he is good looking, or at least from the backside he’s a desirable man, in my opinion LOL!

She can hardly contain herself and good luck? for landing a date with such a man. The conversation is going a mile a minute. Hands in full motion to help with the verbal discussion.
Aren’t we woman pretty darn awesome when we are nervous?! 🙂

She points out what she likes about him after meeting him in the last 10 minutes, “you are easy to get along with but …. I won’t say the word,” laughing nervously. “Narcissitic,”

He reprimands her, “You said you wouldn’t use that word…”

Cutting in, she continues, “well self-absorbed. Not luxury, it’s self-absorbed. You are self-absorbed!!!”

The conversation is taking a manic turn and turns into a hardcore discussion on astrology signs.

She aggressively describes her sign, “We are passionate about everything, we are extremely loyal but if you cross us, we’ll never forget it and never be friends again. We’ll be nice to your face but that’s it.”

He nods and grunts

“We aren’t as jealous as our sign says. But we totally don’t forget. We don’t hold a grudge, but we never forget.”

“So ya, what else, we are very business minded. Strong and pensive. Not lying just not openly expressive.”

They spend time reading more about her astrology sign till her manic state starts to tumble when she cuts him off and declares, “enough of reading this, I think we should skip the rest.”

Laughing and teasing he asks, “Why now, we just started?!”

“Ya this is just getting awkward.”

Really?

He gives in and she changes the topic.

“It’s not often that I connect to people in Toronto.”

“Curious, your choice or what?”

“Well its probably because I’ve lived in so many different places. I really think differently. I have a super open mind”

He’s visibly uncomfortable, shifts in his seat and mumbles something in his deep voice.

“I am sorry, I am not trying to put YOU into that Toronto box, it’s just an observation I’ve made.”

Intense….I am so distracted and fear I am going to miss my commitment to finish my book if I continue to sit here much longer! 🙂

The Case of the Man and his missing pants

I am sitting on a bench waiting. There are three strangers sharing my bench. They are reminding me a little of college; overwhelmingly smelling like bounce dryer sheets, homegrown weed and cigarettes. Imagine all three scents having a party in your nose and then you’ll likely stop using a combination of the three. Your choice.

Which reminds me, I am not a smoker but I invited my friend over to visit me this evening under the stipulation that there is a Vogue pack of menthol cigarettes to be shared. Am I being serious or I have I gone mad?

Well see, I have simply gone mad.

Today a friend suggested meeting up to enjoy some sunshine and do some catching up. The cherry on the top was that I was going to show off my coffee shop where everything happens. And I mean everything. Some days I just don’t post simply because it’s too unbelievable.

In any event I was so proud to show off how my account worked seamlessly. Trust me, showing off my account is a huge highlight in my otherwise monotonous life.

Coffee’s in hand we agreed to stroll along part of the Lakeshore path that when I am alone I simply avoid. I know there is some weird sh*t that happens along this particular portion of the path but with a walking mate it seemed reasonable that we’d be mostly safe.

Well we were anything but safe.

We happened upon a small commune and out of the commune came the event that has completely sent me into crazy land.

It was a beast I say, a mad beast. It emerged from the bushes, bearded, arms flailing, a look of crazy (I know I used this word already) on his face, wearing a light brown shirt, pant-less with his treasured hairy balls peeking out just below the shirt. They were misshapened and one was sagging slightly lower than the other.

He was yelling;

“Women are running around downtown Toronto topless, showing their titties, they are running around without shirts and bra’s – I am just exercising my right as a man, SEEEEEEE!!!! I am ALLOWED!!!! I am ALLOWED!!!!”

As he did a little dance and jiggle.

I averted my eyes but not in time to have the memory of his hairy, sweaty things hanging in our faces to be seared into my mind….forever…

To all the women who have been spotted?!?! wandering up and down Yonge street exercising their legal right to go bare chested in the mid-day heat, please stop before someone gets hurt!

I need another cigarette…

Baritone voices

This morning is a great morning to be anywhere but home. It’s a gorgeous day. I took a tour to my coffee shop and it’s teeming with people! People I am seeing for the first time. It seems the longer this place is open the more people come to see what it’s all about. I highly recommend coming to see what it is all about.

I may have described the interior before but maybe not the attending coffee barista’s. I don’t really like calling them barista’s because this shop doesn’t really buy in to pretentious naming conventions. In fact it would be more suitable to call them Nuns and Priests with all the church pews in the shop. However they are neither Nuns nor Priests they are just regular people that have regular days and are sometimes grumpy.

Today there is a group of music teachers talking about testing students. They are talking about accidentals, flash cards and a whole slew of other terms that well, frankly I haven’t heard in a long while.

In any event I am highly tempted to be frustrated with them because they are being so loud. So loud in fact that I can hardly hear myself think and this doesn’t happen very often because my thinking thoughts are pretty loud.

So in my little state of frustration I desperately want to go over and kick the church pew’s they are seated at (anger management I KNOW seriously!).

Instead, I take a deep breath and think. Who do I know that has such a deep baritone voice that carries block on block on end…hmmmm…and it hits me, my brother!

How can I be angry with a group of older gentlemen having a good time at the expense of their students if they all sound like my brother with their voices that are likely carrying all the way to the lake front? If I close my eyes they do sound like a group of teenage guys out to have a good time, is that so wrong?

Well I can’t be angry.

So I put in my head phones turn on my own music, give one last long stare at the loudest of them all, forgive them for taking over my coffee shop and try to focus on why I am here in the first place…you know…world dominance haha 🙂