Perhaps…Spring

Hello all,
hope you are well,
happy and healthy,
in some parts of the world,
Spring is on the verge of,
springing.

Here in our beautiful ugly,
it's a little early for,
Spring,
but, yesterday and today,
again,
we have had some tremendous,
weather,
sunshine and mildly gorgeous,
weather.
It brings hope,
for an end to Winter.

I can hear a few of you,
saying,
our winters are so much,
milder than they used to be,
and, of course,
this is true,
it's just that I find the,
grey of winter and,
the damp cold,
hard,
harder to deal with,
it weighs heavy of me.
I know it,
I dress for it,
but, I could do without it,
so Spring or even,
an inkling of it,
fills me with joy,
puts a bounce in my step,
and a bigger smile on my face.

I have begun planning my,
Spring wardrobe,
pretty much under control.
Elements of butch style,
well in place,
woo hoo,
dusting off the caps,
polishing the boots,
and laundering the jackets.

I have been attending,
church,
and letting myself,
be open,
no overthinking.
The Alpha course,
starts this week,
in both French and English,
I look forward,
to that.

I don't know what will come,
of all this,
I don't know,
if it will,
ultimately be the right,
fit.
But, I do know:
that I have met,
smart, loving, welcoming people,
that I feel peaceful,
and engaged,
in the house of worship,
that is St Jax's.

I have been open,
to the signs,
and I feel good about that,
my year of spiritual,
and political,
continues...
I remain questioning,
it is who I am

I have been doing quite,
a bit of reading,
a wonderful book,
by the late great,
John Berger,
part of the Penguins,
great ideas series:
Why Look At Animals?
It is brilliant all,
Berger is,
Imho.
It was recommended by Meghan,
at Argo Books,
you should check it out.
I have been doing,
the bible in one year,
an interesting approach.
Lots of things on Urbanism,
and an old favourite,
Anne Lammott's
Traveling Mercies: Reflections of Faith.

My foot feels much better,
the cane and stretching,
have been great,
the flat boots,
have been banished.

I feel fine,
I hope you all do as well,
may Spring come,
soon.

Be well,
you all,

Later girls,
BB







Finding your way back…and better

Hello all, hope the,
deep dark of February,
isn't being too hard on you.

I have been very quiet of late,
on this blog,
in a lot of places,
well, quiet,
for me.

I am still working,
on the not overthinking,
thing.
I figure that will be a,
work in progress for a,
long time to come,
but,
that's cool.
You gotta have stuff,
to work for,
live for,
strive to improve,
in your life,
in your personality.

So, yeah, quiet,
took a bit,
of a break,
from Face Book,
from the blog,
from everything.
having foot issues,
plantar fasciitis,

or as I refer to it to myself: the fascist who lives in my foot

Luckily, this flare up,coincided with a, possibility,of working from home,which was great,because it's frigid cold,out there,not to mention,
slippery,and my rubber boots,don't have adequate,arch support


I have spent time,
at church,
at the museums,
reading, listening,
to podcasts,
watching films,
seeing friends, 
being,
absorbing.

I have also taken,
a photography class,
on line,
that lead me to ask,
myself questions,
about photography,
and,
if I want to go in that,
direction.
The answer is:
I don't think so.

I love photography,
I think I have,
a decent eye,
I like to share,
on Instagram,
https://www.instagram.com/bookishbutch/
on Facebook etc,
illustrate my life,
my city,
but, 
it isn't my voice, 
it's a hobby,
I want to keep,
doing it,
learning from it,
it brings me joy,
but,
it isn't the thing.

So what is the thing?

Hmm, it isn't one thing,
and it isn't easy to,
explain or describe,
I like sharing, communicating,
teaching with a small 't'.
I am not a formally trained,
teacher,
I am,
however,
someone who,
likes to,
share what I learn,
about the world,
about life,
about myself, 
with others,
I like to learn from people,
there is so much to,
learn.

This morning,
as I turned over,
in bed,
woke,
to a new day,
I smiled to myself,
at the good day,
I had yesterday.
Participating,
in a political party,
of ideas,
feeling that my,
talents and strengths,
can be useful in such,
contexts,
that I can inspire,
people to want more,
and better,
that turning away from,
hate and cynicism is the way.

I don't have a big circle,
or massive influence,
and,
I don't believe in,
harassing,
or brow beating.
people,
and I really don't think,
I have all the answers,
politically, spiritually,
but,
I am searching and I have,
found in my new party,
my new church,
a place where I can find,
eventually,
my spot,
I think.

So, I keep writing,
the blog,
I keep,
sharing with you all,
hopefully,
you read it,
hopefully,
every once in a while,
it echos what you are,
feeling,thinking,living,
or just brings a tiny,
sliver of light,
to,
an experience,
that isn't yours,
and adds to your,
understanding,
of people, the world.

This morning,
I thought:
I miss my anarchist,
so much,
and, I will never,
replace him,
I miss my bookstore,
and the camaraderie,
that came from it,
but,
I have,
begun,
after my years,
of grief,
to rebuild,
to take new paths,
while still having,
my pillars,
my family,
my friends,
my love.

I feel confident,
and, strong.

thank you, all, for reading,
for 'listening'

one thing, I would wish,
for 2017...
that you would,
comment,
more,
share more,
what you think.
That you would,
feel comfortable,
to converse,
with me.


Be well all of you,
later girls,
BB

 



When horror hits, home

Good morning all.
Hope you are all well.

I am in a sad,
place,
right now.

It is cold, very cold, 
February right,
around the corner.

The last week brought,
what seemed like nothing,
but,
bad news,
from around the world,
from our neighbors,
and then on Sunday night...
a young man walked into,
a mosque in Quebec City,
and,
opened fire.

He shot and killed,
six men,
five more are hanging on,
to life,
thinly,
in some cases.
My hopes and prayers,
are with them,
with all of us.

How does one react,
to such hatred?
I think the only way,
is through love,
but,
also deep,
sadness.

Thousands of people,
gathered in Quebec City,
Montreal,
all over,
in vigil for the victims,
and,
for our Muslim,
brothers and sisters,
for all of us,
to mourn and,
show our support.

I live and work,
in a multi cultural,
multi ethnic society,
I don't have issues,
with ethnic groups.
I think, 
that sometimes,
it is difficult for all,
of us to understand,
each other,
to accept each others,
peculiarities,
quirks,
differences

this happens in our own families, why should it not happen on a societal level?

sometimes,
effort,
is required.
So what?
All things worthwhile,
require,
effort,
why should,
understanding,
and
getting to know,
people,
be an exception?

I work with many,
people of North African,
origin,
of Muslim faith.
We get along,
some more than others,
but,
I can say that of,
anyone,
no matter,
where,
they were born,
and,
raised.

I have been thinking,
about last Sunday's,
sermon at church.
Our pastor discussed,
the first book of Samuel.
I had never read,
the book of Samuel.

Something he said,
Graham,
our pastor,
really struck me.
We tend to associate,
with people like,
us.

My first instinct,
was to think,
not me:
I have friends,
from all walks,
of life,
all origins,
and age groups.
I have friends,
of different faiths,
of no faiths,
humanists,
atheists,
gay,
straight,
searching,
men,
women,
all kinds of people.

and...
as if he read our minds,
he said,
you know all kinds of people,
interact with all kinds of people,
work with all kinds of people.
but,
the people,
you would have over for dinner,
on a Tuesday night,
are they not...
like you?

I had to look,
into myself and admit,
to myself,
no one else-
that yes,
the people I am,
most comfortable with,
are like,
me,
sort of,
we all of us,
have uniqueness,
we are individuals,
but,
much more unites us,
than,
divides us.

There is a wave,
of intolerance,
of hate and ugly,
sweeping over,
the world right now,
we must,
all us,
stand tall,
take our neighbors hands,
resist,
with love,
with peace,
with determination,
fight back,
stand tall.

be well,
all of you

Later girls,
BB






Neverendingly Vigilant

Good morning all,
hope your week has been,
pleasant, joyful, productive,
educational, fun or 
uplifting.

My week has been fine,
in no way,
exceptional,
it has been a busy week,
a little networking,
a little bit of social.
An ok week.

It has mostly been,
a week of reflection,
not overthinking,
my biggest resolution,
for this year,
and beyond....
not overthinking.

It has been a week,
of realization,
and putting pieces,
together.
A sad week,
an empowering week.

I went to the,
Montreal Women's March,
with my BFF last Saturday,
felt good to be out there,
with my sisters and brothers,
offering up our,
solidarity,
to our American cousins,
holding strong against,
the threat that is,
the orange administration.

Later that evening as I was,
editing and posting photos,
on social media and watching,
You Tube videos from the,
Washington march,
seeing the young women,
like America Ferrera,
Scarlett Johansson,
speaking with such eloquence,
and then the Icons,
of feminism and progressiveness,
that are,
Gloria Steinem, 
Angela Davis,
and all,
still out there,
fighting the fight,
with a smile and much resolve.

It struck me how lucky,
we were to have them, 
to have had them.

and then,
Mary Tyler Moore died...

This has upset me so much,
in the wake of the present,
political situation,
even more so.

Mary Tyler Moore,
was a part of my,
childhood,
formative years.
Her character,
Mary Richards,
was a single woman,
a career woman,
a model not common,
in the world of,
popular culture.
Not then,
Not now.
She was smart,
funny, earnest,
hard working,
vulnerable,
and she,
had great style.
She navigated,
a man's world,
with elegance and grace,
and a quiet brand of,
feminism.
She had a massive influence,
I don't think,
I realized how much,
until I sat in front of,
the computer,
watching the opening of her show,
on You Tube,
it felt like I was loosing,
a member of the family, 
a beloved,
member of the family.

Television in my childhood,
and formative years,
before,
the internet and You Tube,
Netflix and on demand television,
was very different,
it was an integral part,
of our lives,
Mary Tyler Moore,
was a guest in our living rooms,
Saturday nights,
Carol Burnett,
on Sundays,
funny, strong women,
these were their shows,
they had excellent,
cast mates,
but, it was their show.

So, Mary dying this week,
seeing Gloria,
out there,
still bringing it,
still marching, writing, protesting,
it struck me that no matter,
what we think is won,
as far as women's rights,
LGBTQ rights,
racial equality,
religious freedom,
etc
there are always,
people,
just waiting,
to take it all away.
To be clear,
I am not,
referring to differences,
in political opinions.
We need difference to evolve,
in my humble opinion.
I mean,
people who think,
their skin color,
religious affiliation,
gender,
and,
the way they 'love',
is,
somehow,
superior to mine, ours.
People who become elected,
officials,
and decree,
oppressive laws and measures
to control people's lives,
to oppress people,
to bully,
to silence.
Who manipulate people,
into handing over their rights,
by using,
scapegoatism and fear,
and disinformation,
about 'others'

These are dark times.

It seems the fight is,
never ending.

“Never forget that a political, economical or religious crisis is enough to cast doubt on women’s rights. These rights will never be vested. You have to stay vigilant your whole life.” Simone de Beauvoir



Let all of us keep fighting the good fight.
For truth and justice and equal rights.

Be well all of you

Later girls,
BB


It isn’t always about choosing

Hello everyone,
hope the new year,
so far,
has been good to you.

Still holding true?
To your resolutions?
Making plans,
moving forward?


I've shared this before, Calvin and Hobbes, never gets old:-)

I have,
mostly,
stayed the course,
as far as,
my not overthinking things,
plan is concerned.

I had a slight,
slide back,
last week,
got all weird,
with myself,
others,
about expectations,
but...
I am back,
on my path.

You might recall,
in December,
I said I would,
pick a project,
a creative endeavour,
to work on,
this year.

I have spent,
more than a month,
being with friends,
family,
etc,
working, reading, 
watching, observing,
absorbing.

I have chosen to not,
chose,
not yet.

I will be taking,
the Alpha course,
at St Jax of Montreal,
exploring,
the spiritual,
in my life.

They are nice people,
very nice.
I still don't know,
if I will follow that road,

the church road I mean,

But I will follow,
the 'class',
ask questions,
meet people,
break bread.
With an open mind,
and,
an open heart.
I will also be,
attending,
Sunday service,
from now and up until,
the end of the Alpha course,
afterwards,
we shall see.

I am in my second week,
of an online,
photography class,
with shawacademy.com,
my BFF gave me a voucher,
for a free class.
I chose the photography class.

I love photography,
been taking pictures,
for a few years,
learned it on my own,
trial and error,
with varying results,
but,
it makes me happy.
If there is one thing,
I have learned over,
the years,
it's that you always,
have stuff to learn.

Even in the first few classes,
about basic principles,
a couple of lights,
went on in my head.
Very enjoyable.

My promises to myself,
to take concrete steps,
in political,
action,
are also moving along,
meeting people,
networking,
going to the women's march,
on Saturday.
A world wide collective,
protest to the disturbing,
trends in politics,
all over the world,
but,
mostly with our neighbours,
to the South,
we stand with you,
sisters and brothers.

Keeping my journal,
reading everyday.
Being the best,
friend,
daughter,
girlfriend,
person,
I can be.

Letting,
light,
beauty,
thought...
in.
 
Going to keep doing that,
for a while,
sometimes,
it isn't abut choosing,
it's about being.

Be well you all.

Later girls,
BB


2017-Commit, create, flee the haters

It is here, the new year,
has been for a few days.
I have made a few resolutions.
I have discussed a few with all of you,
here on the blog and on face book.

Work harder,
write more,
read more and deeper.
Keep to the path of better health,
and, nutrition.
Do not over think,
things,
everything.
Flee the haters.

Concretely,
I have been keeping a journal,
not really a diary,
keeping track of what I do,
who I see, what I eat and read,
what preoccupies me.

So far, so good,
entries every day,
sometimes more than once,
on long days.

I have been doing my workout,
walking,
a bit of a challenge,
in the deep freeze.
No beating myself up,
no complacency either,
keep going,
do the best I can,
always.

I am currently reading,
Jane Jacobs,
The Death And Life Of Great American Cities
read her years ago,
but,
with my renewed interest,
in urbanity,
the space I live in,
share,
with my fellow citizens,
and,
how much I wish to work,
with others to make it,
a better place,
as great as it can be,
my beautiful ugly.
Jane Jacobs helps me,
flesh out concepts,
give texture and words,
to feelings, thoughts,
longings.
I am also reading,
at the same time,
a wonderful,
book form,
conversation between,
one of our best architects,
and,
a brilliant journalist,
about the importance,
of beauty in our daily,
lives,
surroundings.
More food for thoughts,
Et Si La Beaute Rendait Heureux-Pierre Thibault, Architecte et Francois Cardinal, Journaliste.

Thoreau's essay:
Walking,
of particular interest to us,
walkers and spiritual seekers.

They all go together,
preparing me for my,
new found fervour,
and quest for meaning,
in my life.
Two paths are most important,
to me this year.

Involvement in,
municipal politics,
to me it's a put up or,
shut up, 
proposition.
Things need to change,
I will no longer sit,
ideally by,
sure vote,
but watch people,
who don't deserve to run,
our city and institutions,
get into office,
fight voter apathy,
talk, discuss the issues,
make it real to people,
because it is real,
and,
this 'they are all the same',
attitude has got to go.
No more putting up,
with greed, graft and corruption,
our ideas may not always,
prevail but,
in my case it will no longer be,
through lack of trying.

Also this year,
I want to help people.
I must,
use my people skills and,
communication abilities,
they are my strengths,
and putting them to the,
service of people,
in whichever way I can,
is an objective,
and,
I believe a path to,
meaning.

This year I will make art,
write,
no matter what,
because life goes on,
until it does not.

Funny, all the plans,
I made for New Year's day,
didn't work out,
not even plans,
B and C,
and,
I became much less flustered,
than I had similarly,
a week earlier,
so ,
maybe just maybe,
the reflection and,
especially,
the not overthinking are,
working,
maybe.

I wish all of you,
a happy, healthy, fun and loving new year.

My words to live by for this year,
are by the great Louisa May Alcott:

Good Books like good friends,
are few and chosen; the more select.
The more enjoyable.

Flee the haters,
seek the light.

Be well, all of you.

Later girls,
BB

Yup, it’s resolution time

Hello all,
I hope your holidays,
whichever you celebrate,
have been,
joyous.

Mine were nice,
quiet.

On Christmas Eve,
mom and I went to,
a Christmas service,
at a wonderful,
Anglican Church ,
in downtown Montreal,
an open modern church,
where all are welcome.
Indeed, we felt welcome.
It warmed our hearts.

I took this picture of my fave church a little more than a month prior to the Christmas eve service, it has long been my favorite downtown church(and we have many beautiful churches and cathedrals) it's the architecture, the  church yard, the location, all of it, a whole, that I cannot adequately explain. I had never been inside before Christmas Eve

 

this picture of the interior of St-Jax of Montreal(formerly St-James The Apostle Anglican Church) I took on Christmas Eve 2016

I am an agnostic,
have,
pretty much,
always been.
But,
in these last few months,
I have felt,
adrift.

I am not miserable,
I am not suffering,
but,
I do long,
for...
meaning.

I suppose most of us do.

I have found that,
I disappoint myself.
I am angry and hurt,
much too easily,
touchy, prickly,
more than before.
I expect people to be,
who and what,
they aren't.
I have been a pain in the ass,
especially to my mother,
and,
my girl.

To be clear,
I have much to be grateful for,
family, friends,
good health,
a strong mind.
but..
I need more,
stimulation and conversation,
thinking and pushing myself.

I need meaning,
I need to make a difference,
to people,
to my little corner,
of the world.

I think the church,
might be an avenue,
towards that,
also,
civic involvement.

I became a member,
last year,
of a wonderful,
municipal party,
here in my beautiful ugly,
Smart,caring, 
engaged people,
I have met,
in it's ranks.
Recently,
we elected a vibrant, brilliant,
woman at it's head,
and when,
her victory was announced,
I vowed that I would,
work towards,
having her elected,
Montreal's first,
woman mayor.

So this year,
I will write more,
and work harder at,
it.
I will read more,
and, deeper,
think, reflect.
I will share,
what I am passionate,
about,
with you my 
readers,
be it,
faith, culture, politics,
and,
I hope you will,
comment,
and,
join me,
in a conversation,
about ideas...
life...
all of it

May the hard year that,
2016,
has been,
end on a soft,
peaceful note,
and may we all waltz,
joyfully,
into 2017.

Be well,
all of you.
Stay healthy,
strong,
hopeful,
and,
kind.

Later girls,
BB 

Beginning to look a lot like….

Hello everyone,
hope you are all,
keeping well.
It's coming on Christmas,
and,
I am actually all done,
with my preparations, which is,
stupendous.


I have been keeping,
my promise to myself,
of not overthinking,
obsessing over things,
so far, I am managing,
mostly
:-)

I have been feeling a,
need for spiritual,
sustenance,
a need to make,
a difference,
to be involved.
What that means,
I am not quite sure,
but I have been drawn,
to churches,
their peace and quiet,
their beauty,
the words, the music,
can't really explain it.

I have also felt a call,
to politics,
roll up my sleeves,
and get down to,
the grass roots.
These are interesting times,
scary times, we live in.
I hear a call to serve,
not arms,
and,
in spite of the current illness,
that seems to be afflicting,
politics,
what I do 'hear' is that people,
want change.
To me Trump is no real change,
he is stagnant savage capitalism,
wrapped up in,
a made in China cloak of,
Make America Great Again.
Hypocritical, rich man crap.
I think a lot of the people who,
voted for him and agree with his,
'principles' are,
good earnest people,
searching for change,
but, 
they 
need to make change,
not abdicate,
their rights.

I believe both the
left and right,
want a better world,
a safe, clean, hopeful,
world,
planet.
I don't think screaming,
curses at each other will,
accomplish that,
or anything in fact.
There are facts,
and,
opinions,
not the same thing.
Demonizing will lead no where.
I believe in better angels.

One resolution for the new year,
flee haters,
debate with people of,
good faith.
No more mansplanners,
No more wasted energy,
thoughtful intelligent,
pragmatic and optimistic,
plans for change,
because change,
my friends,
is of the essence.

Working at a local level,
to make my,
neighborhood,
city, 
world.
Better,
belief and meaning,
this is what I,
want,
need.

World peace and better understanding,
lofty and attainable,
all at once.

Enjoy the lead up,
to the holiday frenzy

be well,
you all.
Later girls,
BB

November is over!

Hello All,

November is finally over,
yes!!

December is a much better,
if colder and more,
expensive,
month.

Bring it on.

Let it be resolved,
that for the next,
month and a bit,
I will indulge,
in,
NO OVERTHINKING
there!
it is said for all,
to see,
to read.

All you my friends,
my family,
my acquaintances,
my readers,
know this about me,
I am a thinker,
that is who I am,
it is neither,
a good or a bad thing,
it just is,
one might even say,
it is what it is.
But, aside,
from being a thinker,
I am also an,
over thinker,
and,
that isn't good.
It stops me from taking,
action,
it stifles,
my ambitions,
it drives my loved ones,
insane.
I obsess,
I over analyse.
This is especially bad,
when I am unhappy,
when I am searching,
for the next thing.

A new year is about to dawn.
I have decided,
that this is the year,
I start the next big thing.
I have narrowed it down to,
three possibilities,
all are creative endeavours,
all interest me,
intensely,
immensely.
I will devote myself to,
one of them,
starting at the end of January,
and intend,
that by December,
I will have a finished,
project,
no matter what.

That is my resolution.

For the month of,
December and the first days,
of January,
I don't over think,
I work,
I share,
I breathe,
I walk,
I love,
I experience,
I do not search,
I let experience,
come to me,
present itself,
I will be reading,
going to films,
listening to music,
watching tv,
art exhibits,
museums,
conversing with good,
smart interesting,
people,
I will be living my life,
without dissecting,
everything.

There will be no obsessing,
no overthinking.

I need to break that.

Move on from the hurt,
the fear,
the paralysis.
Move.

I have been inspired by,
the musical,
Hamilton,
it's story,
it's creation,
it's actors, 
dancers,
singers,
great art,
lifts us,
inspires us,
in sometimes,
surprising,
unexpected ways.

I wish you all,
a wonderful weekend.

Will be back
on Monday

Later girls,
BB




Goodbye Mr, Cohen

Hello all, 
Hope you are all,
fine,
happy and healthy.
Been a bit of a rough,
week,
last week,
for us bleeding heart,
liberal types. 
Cold cock,
punch in the face,
the election of,
Trump,
WTF!!!!
but,
rise up,
fight.
I realize,
this is easy for me,
to write, say, think,
I am not an American.
But, I have faith,
in Americans,
just like I did,
in Canadians,
through the dark,
Harper years,
stand tall,
brothers and sisters,
keep up the good fight,
this too shall pass.

Still reeling,
from the election news,
and,
in an attempt to distract,
myself,
I was scrolling,
through,
my Instagram account,
lots of menswear,
lots of cats,
pretty photographs,
very little news,
but,
I do follow,
Rolling Stone,
Mother Jones,
The Advocate,
that kind of stuff,
so I scroll,
and,
I see a picture of,
Leonard Cohen,
and,
and the words,
Leonard Cohen dead at 82.
What??
So I turn to google,
and,
yes, it's true,
Leonard Cohen,
is dead.

Instant sadness.

The month of November,
had been better,
than expected,
I did not,
in spite of,
surgery and waning light,
feel sluggish and blue,
like I often (read always),
feel in November,
I felt good,
sort of,
optimistic,
then the Trump thing,
but after,
freaking out,
I figured this might be,
a turning point,
a historical rallying point,
for breaking down,
and,
maybe even fixing things,
at the very least,
spur people to involvement,
action.
I did not come,
to this on my own,
help from friends,
and people much smarter,
than me,
pointing me in that direction.
There is always hope,
and things are never,
finished.

But, Leonard Cohen,
Dead,
that's hard.

I know he was 82,
he lived a long,
and,
full,
life.
Love, work, music,
sex,
family, work,
legacy,
creation,
words, tunes.
He left us,
a great body of work.
Words polished,
words agonized over,
work,
decades of work.
A man of art,
a man of appetites,
a man of quests,
a man of understanding,
a man of doubts,
a lover of life,
a lover of language,
a lover of women,
by all accounts,
a good friend,
father,
neighbor.
I did not know,
Leonard Cohen,
personally,
we both loved,
this city,
our beautiful ugly,
I did not know him,
but,
I felt he knew me.
My longings,
my desires,
my ambitions,
my failures,
my foibles,
my qualities,
my fears,
my triumphs,
yes,
I felt he knew me,
I felt he knew,
us.
The collectivity,
the common consciousness,
has lost an important,
mind, heart, soul,
we will miss him,
but,
his words,
his music,
his voice.
live on.

Godspeed Mr Cohen,
Goodbye.

leonard-cohen


Be well my friends,
be kind to each other,
reach out and love, smile.

Later girls,
BB