Roadblocks

Will there be roadblocks in & out of the Golden Horseshoe while it remains in phase one as the rest of Ontario moves on to phase two? How else can the rest of the province be protect from possible contagion? If I go to, say Cambridge, will I have to spend 14 days in quarantine before I can even get out of the car? At least I’m not worried about getting a hair cut 🙂

I have used Zoom this past week more than usual by attending the launch for Heather Babcock’s Dirty Sugar. The launch was smoothly run & well-attended. I’ll wait for the eBook before ordering it though. (https://www.inanna.ca/product/filthy-sugar/) Purging books the past month has reinforced my desire for empty shelves & to simplify 🙂

I have been attending recovery meetings via Zoom & enjoy them more now that I’ve learned how to ‘control’ Zoom. At first I loved seeing all those faces but I quickly became distracted by people’s actions while they were listening to others share. Not that they were deliberately distracting but their eating, grooming, stretching etc isn’t what I’m there for. So I minimize Zoom to audio.

I also only turn my camera on if I’m participating, the same with sound. No one needs to hear the TV, the kids, the dogs in the other room while someone is sharing. Maybe I have control issues but the sounds of people shuffling pages, cutting fingernails or humming to themselves is annoying. Some groups only allow mikes on when participating – which does cut down on that extraneous sound. Zoom Etiquette ebooks on their way 🙂

I’ve been posting a photo series of Ghosts. Places that have closed but some trace of them remains, usually the outline of a store name. Walking along the Danforth I’ve been many ghosts of the future. Restaurants with new ‘for lease’ signs in the window. At least one that had started to change to a fast-food chain back in February now changing to different fast-food chain. I guess takeout hasn’t created sufficient cash flow – though only doing take-out between 4 – 7 may not be that profitable. I’m have my camera eye on you ghosts of the future.

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New Era Of Butch

I haven’t been totally socially isolated this past week. On Sunday I went for a social distant walk with a friend in recovery. We walked one of the routes I often take on Saturday going to our morning meeting. Zoom is good but even distant face to face is better. Tim’s was open too. Recovery with coffee is the best 🙂 

Rain makes social isolation much easier. So this week I remind housebound Mon Wed Fri mornings to do spring cleaning & tossing. You know those note pads, envelopes, rough drafts you thought would come in handy – out they go. If I haven’t looked at, used them over 10 years bye bye. Rough drafts of the novel’s I’ve blogged already aren’t worth the space they take. Those cables I don’t remember ever having seen for something I don’t own anymore bye bye.

The biggest release was of books I’ve read but have no one to pass them on to. Mailing them isn’t worth the expense. Carting them around hoping to find a ‘free library’ to stuff them into is more work than I’m willing to put. So into the recycle bin.

The Artist’s Way talks about letting go of things that hold us down. This stuff doesn’t have any emotional hold on me so why litter my spaces with it any more. Also I feel more focused without that layer of dust too. Cleaning & purging takes more time than just dusting 🙂 I do look through things & make quick keep or toss decisions. Donate isn’t fast enough for me. I’d rather have empty space.

Healthy wise both of us are not sneezing or coughing. I am wearing bandana or neck warmer masks when I go out, I pull them up when near people. I’ve started to give them a little squirt of cologne too just to make them a bit more e pleasant, for me. In fact I’ve scented whatever hankie I’m using for blowing my nose too. The new era of butch has arrived.

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Password: Isolation

Are we near to planking yet? Some once was star believes covid19 is part of a conspiracy to rid the planet of everyone over 60 (who isn’t as rich as them to buy protection & distance). Media whores can always spin events to get themselves some focus. Go back to your room once was star.

I’m watching these cooking competitions on the Food Network & thinking they must have all been in the can before covid19 was out of the bag. Will there be another season of So You Think You Can Dance? How safe are the contestants in the Big Brother Canada house (a show I have 0 interest in)?

Meanwhile on the home front I’ve been taking my vitamins, listening to a different one of set of “All 9 Solfeggio Frequencies: Activate Qi Flow and Healing Energy With OM Mantra and Powerful Drums” each morning. Opted to use my morning walk time to do yard work Mon Tues & Wed – thus increasing my social isolation. The yard needed lots of work. In particular the rose of Sharon, which is a vigorous self-seeder. Cut off all the remain seed pods & starting pulling up the sprouts before I have a forest back there. Rhubarb sprouting, as are the various bleeding hearts, hostas, lilac, poppies, even wisteria has a few leaf nubs.

Taking in some Zoom meetings, even a zoom poetry slam. I wonder how soon there be a market for zoom back drops because I’m seeing parts of people homes I never expected to see. Zoom working out some privacy, security issues – suddenly password are needed & some meeting are including that password as part of their notification – which to me sort of makes a password irrelevant. 

Latest word on masks – wear them when social distancing is comprised by line-ups outside waiting to get in to shop, in transit. Cloth is okay for holding in virus but not for keeping it out. So I finally candid into my collection of stunning Diop bandanas 🙂 if I have to pull it up once to cover into the wash it goes when I get home. 

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‘falling in love while in love’

Hot Damn’s season 6 finale was via Zoom. For once I didn’t feel I was taking the best seat in the house 🙂 But it was a pretty quiet house of nearly 60 people from across Canada & possibly around the world as there is no way to tell where who is zoomin’ from. In fact one has the choice of being in the room & not being seen. Cool & the tool of  future social distancing.

Slam rules cover costume & props but may have to extend to backdrops 🙂 The picture quality is good, depending on the cameras of the users. Sound quality was excellent. The poets were all very comfortable in front of the camera & in fact some more confident without a live audience in front of them.

The work of the slam poets was excellent, I don’t envy the judges. I enjoyed the few pieces that took on covid19 in a practical way – what do you do when the voices in your head that use to force you to wash your hands compulsively are now really coming from your TV? Writing & performances were excellent. Scoring was quicker without flip cards to flip 🙂

 

Feature Jillian Christmas, in BC wearing polkadots & behind a drum kit, started her set by reminding us of what has been silenced in the covid19 clatter i.e. pipeline oppression of indigenous peoples. I’ve seen Jillian several times & her warmth & emotional vulnerability is a blessing. Singing, reciting & reading a few piece from her book ‘The Gospel of Breaking’ her set was too short. Her simple self-accompaniment reminded me of Jessie Mae Hemphill. Just a couple of lines of too many great lines ‘there are no renewable resources’ ‘falling in love while in love.’ If you want more, buy her book: https://arsenalpulp.com/Books/T/The-Gospel-of-Breaking 

The show was nimbly hosted by Robyn Sidhu, with an able assist by Charlie Petch. It was a great success without a venue 🙂 But I did miss the live reactions of the audience. There is no ‘hiss’ or ‘boo’ button to react to the scores. Texting those remarks doesn’t have the same energy.Scores were added up. A winner was declared. Who? You’ll have to follow Hot Damn to find out 🙂

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Mask Mess

Woman wearing mask around her chin, smoking, clearly irritated she can’t smoke while wearing it. Two men in front seat of a car, masks around their chins, talking at each other. Woman pulling mask down to talk on cellphone. Me thinking maybe I should buy a beekeeper’s hat – which is probably as effective as a mask & will also be great for blocking uv rays for what is looking to be a socially distant, but sunny, summer.

Social distant stripes at registers, plastic shields at registers. I almost said cash registers but only cornerstores are accepting cash the days – bank profits will be sky high with the additional fees they collect on both ends of those transactions. Hey banks – how about waving credit/debit card fees for three months?

Walking around parked cars, into on coming traffic,  to avoid people on the sidewalks because patios, fruit market offerings are taking up so much room already. Which is worse hit by a car or covid? If they hit you will that driver’s insurance pay or can they sue you for damage to their paint job?

All these are the dilemmas of the new world we have been thrust into. I wonder how long before we have iDistance – a device that beeps when people get too close. One newish development has been the Zoom boom. Many 12 Step meetings have gone to Zoom so recovery people can stay connected – a great idea – I ‘belong’ to one such group, so far. Some wonder about online anonymity but I think in the end I’m powerless over who finds out I’m in recovery. I do think ‘the only requirement’ is sort of compromised – beside the desire for recovery one must also have a device to access online & a data plan.

We will survive but I doubt if lessons will be learned because the rich will get richer & the rest of us will be left to scramble.

(photos all north side Bloor to Danforth overpass & viaduct)
– April 5 – Hot Damn! It’s Queer Slam – Season 6 finales – online

https://www.facebook.com/events/529712257592790/

July

All’s Well That Ends Well – Stratford Festival

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March 2020 Recap

Over the past month TOpoet.ca my following grew to 386! Maybe I’ll hit 400 by the end of year, if the end of the world doesn’t come first. The only stat WP doesn’t give is where which followers are located but WP map does show most my hits have come Canada, USA second & in fourth place Italy!! I guess social isolation made them seek entertainment. Bangladesh & Kenya remain in the top 10, both above India! with Romania making an unexpected climb to ninth place! My Tumblr flowing is at 263. It would more but I block hetero porn & also gay shooting up drugs porn. Twitter is at 221 followers.

Otherwise March has been a fairly quiet month, except of course for the pandemic that spells the end of the complacent as we know it. What caught everyone off guard was how quickly it went from annoyance over there to threat at our front doors. A threat we don’t want to let in to wash its hands at our sink. It looks like my DC getaway for capturing Fire will have to wait until next year 😦 

 

March has been productive. Picture Perfect is being gradually blogged & I’ve been sufficient looks to keep it going. The Rules for Monks continues to produce great prompts. I’m at a set of food rules that are timely for the pandemic shopping panic. Artist’s Way is progressing slowly but surely. not rushing it makes a difference.

For the summer I’ll be looking at Distant Music, my Fiddlehead chap book, on Wednesdays & Thursdays – giving Rules a summer break. Currently I’m inputting the text & it is interesting to be pulled back into my creative east coast past. Some pieces I have fairly strong memory of, others are surreal mysteries. Coming soon on July 1. 

That’s the only real coming soon I can offer as a sneak peek. Stratford, Shaw seasons are up in the air though I wouldn’t be surprised to see them both canceled thanks to covid19. Same for the Hot Damn! finale – which will end up as a zoom slam, that can be viewed around the world. I hope my Romanian fans zoom in.

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