I'm always in a bit of a staring trance in front of this piece of art. I don't know who wrote the message but it always makes me smile. I've spent my life knowing I'll never work as hard as Pappy. It's simple, he started when he was a kid, I started when I was a teenager. He was my father, so he made sure I had food, shelter and an education; his father wasn't able to provide the same. My dad grew up poor in postwar Italy, I grew up peachy keen in Canada post the Canada-USSR Summit Series. Labour is on my mind a lot these days, I'm working on a piece about the various jobs I've held over the years (barista, concessionist, clean up crew, retail clerk, receptionist, waitress, tutor, teacher and general cog in the wheel of capitalism.) Outside of working life, I spend a lot of time avoiding being too busy, not just because it's a trap but also because I'm not great at it. Especially in winter, the season I require record amounts of sleep.
This week ahead then is an active volcano of busy, an anomaly - which as fellow Trek fans know always sounds ominous - but as long as I stick to the Prime Directive and dress warm (it's supposed to be -30 C in the shade) I'll be fine.
On Tuesday, January 28th, The Marilyn Denis show will re-air the Let's Talk Special in conjunction with the Bell Let's Talk campaign, the most incredible and generous initiative to support mental health agencies and end the stigma of mental illness in Canada, period. My dad and I watched it together last year. This year, I'll be getting ready to read at the Pivot Readings the following night. The series is run by Jacob McArthur Mooney and Lex Von Konigslow, they also happen to be married and geniuses. I'm not just saying so, I own two of Jake's poetry books and I've seen Lex's resume (and expect to be reading her first novel soon, space-time-continuum speaking.) The night after that, Thursday January 30th, I'm reading at Speakeasy, the University of Guelph MFA in Creative Writing reading series I co-founded with Ayelet Tsabari.
Out of the house two nights in a row? What's happening to me? As friends can attest, I am not a night owl. I'm no lark either. I like to think of myself as a mid-afternoon Chickadee. That's my "Peak Productivity Performance" time, every other Thursday, of course.