Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Deconstructing a North American education

My goal in 2011 is to deconstruct everything I learned in school about what "success" consists of; to subtract my ego from the equation - no small feat. But I figure it's that or keep torturing myself over my perceived lack of "outward" successes. 

I will willingly give myself over to what my life coach calls "death moments", meaning death of the ego, where I'm not the centre of attention nor will I try to position myself to be, and see what that feels like. Will I disappear? Will people forget about me?

Every day will be a new opportunity to release the belief that this or that new product will make me more acceptable to others; that the number of readers or "followers" is the only way to define a blog's success; that my self-esteem is based on circumstances outside myself; that the shape of my body determines whether I am lovable or not; that beautiful people are perpetually happy; that rich people are perpetually without worry; that celebrities lead charmed lives; basically, I will attempt to undo all the subliminal and not so subliminal messaging that bombards me daily. 

We're so constantly fed utter bullshit, I certainly being no more immune to it than any other. I sense it will be a colossal undertaking to rip that incessantly growing weed out by the roots but I've reached a point where buying the bullshit is only leading to misery and self-loathing. 

I was watching a segment on Brazil and its growing global economic status on 60 Minutes, and the one thing I remember were the shots of women in bikinis, frolicking on the beach without a care in the world; real women, not those skinny rakes that dominate mainstream media. These ladies had curves, boobs, tummies, asses, and they seemed perfectly happy; not moping around, obsessing about caloric intake, every ounce of joy sucked out of them. 

To me, that's success. Fully loving and accepting yourself, exactly as you are, right now, and frankly, not giving a shit about what anyone else thinks.

Maybe I'll find success in 2011...

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Letters from Abimbola Mtakwishayenu, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #6

Dear Venice,

I think I see plant that look like, what you say? pot? But I not sure. I tell my aunt but she get very strange look on her face. So I show her picture you send me. She look confused. So I don't do anything. If I do, my aunt get angry, and that not good. Maybe I explore by myself and not tell anyone. I tell her this will help the family. Then, she will not be angry. What this Cheezie you talk about? You eat whole bag? At once? What is puke? I no understand. You teach me good English. I very grateful. 

Ok, bye.

Abimbola Mtakwishayenu

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Letters from Abimbola Mtakwishayenu, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #5

Dear Venice,

Today we learn how to plant vegetable and make garden. I hope the vegetable will not die. It is very dry here and we have little water but I will pray for vegetable to grow. The old white man in fancy clothes say if we pray hard enough, we will have a garden of plenty. I think plenty means lots of vegetable. This would be good. We eat lot of rice but always the same. Generous of people to send food but the same always is not so good. But we grateful for all. Rice better than no food. 

Ok, bye.

Abimbola Mtakwishayenu

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Letters from Abimbola Mtakwishayenu, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #4

Dear Venice,

The old man in fancy clothes say because of you, me and my brothers and sisters can go to school. He give us crayons and paper to make you a card to say thank you. I am so happy for you in our lives. You change things so much. I am very excited to go to school again. It will be the first time for my brothers and sisters. I tell them they will have much fun. I tell them you are an angel, sent to help us, when they cry about our mother's death. I say to them: we are not alone. A nice lady far, far away is helping us. 

Abimbola Mtakwishayenu

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Letters to Emily Smith, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #7

Dear Emily,

I am soooo bored. I thought this summer would totally rock. Turns out it totally sucks. I thought my place would be party central but most of my friends are gone away with their families after they said they were staying here. F*ckers. I could have gone traveling with my family too but I'm not a masochist. Besides, Europe will be way more fun when I'm older, sans parents, if you get my drift. 

My dad left me his credit card but I'm sick of shopping. I went like, everyday, for a couple weeks but now it's just lame. So I basically hang out by our pool getting high on weed and reading fashion magazines. Looking at those models makes me want to puke up my lunch, which I only do every second day, so I don't cause myself serious health problems. 

I'm down to a size zero but now they have double zero - the new gold standard. So, I have some work to do. I should probably stop smoking weed because it makes me hungry. I can scarf a big bag of Cheetos in one sitting. And, of course, there's no way I can keep that down, not if I want to be a double zero so I usually make myself puke it up.
But life without weed would not be tolerable. I mean, there is nothing to do. I melted a beeswax candle and tried to give myself a bikini wax with it. I thought the wax would be really good since it's all natural. I just ended up making a huge mess and burning myself. 

Then I tried to make homemade nail polish with food coloring and corn syrup. The pool boy let me try it on his nails. We just ended up licking it off. No, it wasn't a sexual thing. He's gay, and like, my best friend in the whole world right now. He also makes the greatest cosmos ever. 

Then there's the tennis instructor. But that's a whole other letter. 


Friday, July 9, 2010

Letters from Abimbola Mtakwishayenu, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #3

Dear Venice,

My mother die last week. I am very sad. It is only me and my brothers and sisters now. My aunts and uncles come to say goodbye but went back to their village. I want to go back to school but do not know when I can do this. My brothers and sisters are too young to be all alone. I pray every day for help so I can go learn new things and help my family. The old man in fancy clothes give me a book, The Little Prince. I read it many times. It help me with my English. I think red roses are very pretty, and hope one day I can have one to take care of.

Abimbola Mtakwishayenu

Friday, June 18, 2010

Letters to Emily Smith, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #6

Dear Emily, 

Well, I just finished my high school sophomore year. Only two more years to go. We had this wicked party last weekend to celebrate and everyone got totally wasted. It was awesome! Now, I get to lounge around our pool for the summer. That'll mean smoking lots of pot. I mean, obviously, I'm gonna be so bored. My parents offered to take me to Europe for a couple months but that's so passé. Like I care about seeing things that are hundreds of years old. Although, the shopping is pretty good in Paris and Milan. 

My boyfriend dumped me for some do-gooder, academically-excellent geek. Whatever. I'm over it. The tennis instructor whose been hitting on my mom also has an eye for me. I so trump my mom. She'll have to find another boy toy. I think she got bored with my dad a long time ago. Now, they just cheat on each other openly, you know? Maybe they're just too lazy to get a divorce. Anyway, my mom can be a real cougar. It's totally embarrassing. She's even hit on some of my friends. I was mortified. I mean, that is so not cool. 

My dad slept with a senior at my high school. Now that was embarrassing. He's kind of a perv. He likes them younger too, like my mom. But why do they have to be so close to my age? Aren't college chicks way cooler? I don't know what his deal is but it's kinda gross. Like, go smoke another one dad. You freak. At least he hasn't hit on my girlfriends, yet. 

So, it'll be totally awesome with the two of them gone for the summer. It'll just be me, the housekeeper, the gardener and the pool boy. Oh, and the tennis instructor. Can you say party at my place? I'm stoked. Speaking of which, I think it's time to spark up a dubee. Gotta kick off the summer on the right foot, you know?

Hope you're doing well and the weather is nice in Africa.


Friday, May 28, 2010

When in doubt, laugh at other people

Letters from Abimbola Mtakwishayenu, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #2

Dear Venice,

Today I walk very far to the water well with my sisters. We get water and carry it very far back to village. Then, I help take care of my younger brothers and sisters. My mother is very sick. She have what my dad have. He died. Today, we make rice for the family. The nice Christian people give us food yesterday. We lucky. There was fighting over the food but we got some.

Ok, bye.

Abimbola Mtakwishayenu

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Letters to Emily Smith, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #5

Dear Emily,

I am soooo hungover today, I just want to die. I feel so crappy. Every time I get this way, I promise myself I won't drink ever again. Then, after a few days, I forget how crummy I felt and do it all over. The one advantage is it makes me puke a lot, so I might have lost a pound or two. 

One of my friends had a major party last night, so, of course, I had to join in the festivities. But I never know when to stop, you know? I start feeling all warm and fuzzy, then the next thing you know, I'm puking my guts out while trying to shove some random guy off me.

Have you tried alcohol yet? I would suggest a hard liquor with a good mixer. That's my favorite. But you have to be careful 'cause it creeps up on you. You'll feel perfectly fine after a few drinks, then you'll try to get up and you won't be able to. That's when you know you're in trouble. 

And you have to watch those boys. As soon as they get a whif that there's a drunken girl around, they'll pounce on you and try to take your clothes off. One time that happened to me but I was too late. I woke up completely naked while this guy was on top of me. I must have passed out for, like, a really long time. 

You must have parties in your village, right? When your parents are away? Mine are gone a lot, so I party pretty hard. Sometimes, I think it's just something to do, to pass the time, you know? I mean, I have friends and all, but we get bored so we party. Wow, my head really hurts. I better go take an aspirin, or maybe a Vicodin, it hurts pretty bad. And I think I'm gonna go drink, like, a litre of water. I'm parched. 

Hope you're doing well. Write soon!


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Inappropriate things to say before having sex

1 - Call me "daddy".
2 - We should take this diaper off first.
3 - Do you mind if I call you my ex-girlfriend's name?
4 - Which hole do I put it in?
5 - Should I wash my hands?
6 - Do you mind if I wear this dildo?
7 - Do you like my panty trophy shelf?
8 - I've never told anyone this but we're being filmed.
9 - I usually cry afterwards. Will you hold me?

and last but not least.... 

10 - My real name is John Edwards.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Letters from Abimbola Mtakwishayenu, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #1

Dear Venice,

Thank you for letters you send me. They help me learn English. Today, the old white man in fancy clothes want me to be on TV. He tell me my new name is Emily Smith because rich people cannot read African. He tell me to look very sad so that rich people give us money. I say OK. He give me candy.

Abimbola Mtakwishayenu 

Monday, April 26, 2010

Groaner? I think not...

What's the difference between a husband and a lover?  
Answer: 45 minutes.

What's the difference between a wife and a mistress? 
Answer: 45 pounds.

COME ON! That shit is gold.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Things you don't want to hear from your seat mate at 30,000 feet

1 - The pilot's my brother. He's an alcoholic.
2 - Here, hold this box cutter.
3 - Would you call my wife and tell her we're having an affair?
4 - Want to help me pants the man between us?
5 - Peanuts give me gas.
6 - How come your oxygen mask didn't come down?
7 - I didn't buy two seats but I probably should have.
8 - They didn't have any Braille books at the airport. Would you read to me?
9 - 400 virgins, here I come!

and last, but not least...

10 - Hi, I'm John Edwards. You're pretty.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Letters to Emily Smith, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #4

Dear Emily,

I had to get a vaccination today. What a drag. I mean, I didn't have to wait in line like most people, 'cause my dad's rich and has connections but still. I don't know why I have to get them. I never get sick. I'm super healthy. I always make sure our cook puts out fresh fruit for breakfast every morning. And I work out like, every day. Plus, unlike most of my friends, I only puke once a day, not three or four. A girl's gotta keep her figure. If I scarf down a bag of cookies, there's no way I'm not hoarking that shit up. It'll go straight to my thighs. Anyway...

You probably don't need any needles and shit since you live in nature. I think it's because we live in houses and drive cars and eat in restaurants that we get sick, you know? You're lucky, you get to commune with the trees, and the sky and the earth. It must be so wonderful and simple to live in a grass hut, eating off the land. 

There's a big organic movement here. You guys should really cash in on that. It's like, huge here. We're talking millions and millions of dollars. Your village could become an organic tourist destination! Come spend a few days in lush, tropical Africa. It would be a huge seller! Are there palm trees where you live? I mean, I think there are but I'm not sure.

Geez. Now my skin is getting all red and puffy from that stupid vaccination! I was gonna sit by the pool and try to get some sun but now I'll look like a dork with this big welt on my arm. Now what? My day is ruined. I bet you get a lot of sun in Africa. Do you need to use sunscreen too? 

Anyhoo, guess I'd better find something else to do. I think I have a bit of weed left. Maybe I'll smoke that and eat a bag of cheezies. Pot makes me so hungry! I'll totally have to puke after that. Hey, you might have pot growing in your backyard and not even know it! I'll send you a picture of what the plant looks like and you can check. Your life will never be the same. You could get rich selling that stuff. Those international aid organizations should really look into that, you know? Show you how to become sustainable or self-sufficient or whatever. 

Well, my Valium's wearing off so I'm gonna go smoke that joint now. Tata for now! Keep in touch!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

For the Emily Smiths of the world...

There's a bit on Oprah first, which is very entertaining, but the rant for needy children starts at 2:20. Enjoy.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Letters to Emily Smith, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #3

Dear Emily,

I just bought an iPhone. How excited am I? This thing does everything! I can surf the Web, check my e-mail, text friends and use it as a phone. And it has like, a gazillion apps (that's short for applications). 

It can do stuff like find the best chicken wing place in town, play games, read a book, design and send digital postcards, look up recipes (not that I cook but for the kitchen staff - I think they'd really like that), tune an instrument, track expenses (although I don't really need to - I just use my dad's credit card, he takes care of the rest), edit digital photos, check surf conditions worldwide, find constellations and planets, track celebrity and fashion news, record music, and on and on!

Isn't it like the coolest thing ever? I mean, before I just had your run of the mill texting cellphone with a flip-out keyboard. Sure, I still had access to the Web and stuff but it was so not the same. That phone was ghetto. This one kicks ass! Hey, maybe I can find where you live! I'm sure there's a maps app. You'll have to send me your address. You can text or e-mail it to me if you want. That would be so cool! 

You should definitely give me your e-mail address. Then, I can send you photos of where I live. Or, we can become friends on Facebook! Then you can see all my photos! You must be on Facebook. I mean, like, the whole world is. Why didn't I think of this before? You should get on MSN too. Then we could chat in real time. How awesome would that be!

Anyhoo, gotta run. Tennis lesson. Which I HATE. I don't know why my mom insists I take them. I think it's because she thinks the instructor is really hot. Whatever. I have a massage afterwards so at least I have something to look forward to. 

Well, tata for now. Write soon!

Friday, March 26, 2010

My boyfriend's pitch for yeast infection medication marketing

Yeast. It belongs in bread, not burgers. (Think about it... think about it... ahhh, there you go.)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Inappropriate things to say to someone after you've had sex for the first time

1 - You really do remind me of my mother.
2 - I should feed the girl in my basement.
3 - I'll be right back. I have to call my husband.
4 - This doesn't mean you'll get an A.
5 - How many kids have you had?
6 - Man, my crabs are itchy.
7 - Next time we should use your ass.
8 - I lied. I didn't have a vasectomy.
9 - If my kids call, say you're my brother.

And last but not least...

10 - My real name is John Edwards. 

Friday, March 19, 2010

Check this out y'all

Lewis Black, another favorite comic of mine, explaining religion. The more I think about religion, the more its absurdity hits me. This distresses me. I must laugh.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Here's one a colleague of mine sent me...

Husband says to wife: "My Olympic condoms have arrived... I think I'll wear gold tonight."

Wife says: "Why not wear silver and come second for a change."

Monday, March 15, 2010

Letters to Emily Smith, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #2

Dear Emily,

I am so mad, I could cry. That stupid girl with her stupid face piercings and bad dye job at Starbucks screwed up my order again! I took one sip and had to throw my latté away. I hate it when that happens! Especially when I need my caffeine fix! If I don't have my caffeinated beverage at a certain time every day, I am a complete mess. 

I wish they could hire decent people at Starbucks. I mean, how hard is it? Actually, it would probably be a great job for some of your older relatives if they wanted to move here. You don't need to know much. They'll show you how to work the espresso and cappuccino machine. You just can't steal the money in the till, as tempting as that may be. 

Wow. I should start a business. Finding jobs for poor people from Africa. I think I'd be great at it. And it would make me feel good that I'm helping immigrants adjust to life here. You know, that's just the kind of person I am. I want to help people. 

Crap. Gotta go. Am at another Starbucks. These f*cking immigrants! I said: tall, half-sweet, soy milk, non-fat, low-foam, hint of whip cream, three chocolate sprinkles on my latté! How hard is that?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Dane Cook - f*ckin' A

Dane Cook is currently my favorite comic. Every time I listen to his material, I shit myself (not literally but... no pun intended - if you've got that kind of fetish, go ahead and fantasize about it. I know you want to.) Anyhoo, this was the first glimpse I got of Dane Cook in action - the B & E.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Inappropriate things to say when you first meet your girlfriend's mother

1-  Wow, great rack!
2 - What's your daughter's name again?
3 - Those charges were not proven in court.
4 - I don't believe in employment.
5 - Human flesh is much more tender than I was led to believe.
6 - I don't sleep with all my students.
7 - Who knew she took it in the pooper?
8 - Excuse me for a moment, I have to call my parole officer.
9 - You wanna do a 3-way?

and a really, really inappropriate thing to say in this situation is...

10 - Did you know your daughter can fart out of her pussy?

Monday, March 8, 2010

Letters to Emily Smith, my sponsored child in Africa, installment #1

Dear Emily,

I am stuffed! Just had a huge dinner at a new restaurant in the market. It's a seafood place. Is there seafood in Africa?

Anyway, I had this shrimp dish. It was amazing. The shrimp were plump and juicy and perfectly cooked and dripping with garlic butter. Mmmmm. Yummy goodness. I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. 

I also had a lobster tail with more garlic butter. Apparently, garlic is really good for you. You should eat some, if you have garlic in your village. 

Now I feel like a beached whale, all fat and heavy. Maybe I ate too much but it was soooo good. You know when you're eating something so tasty, you just can't stop yourself even though you feel full? That's exactly what I did at dinner tonight. I ate like a little piggy. 

Now I'm paying the price. But that's ok 'cause my personal trainer is coming in the morning to help me work off those extra calories before I hit the mall for some shopping in the afternoon. Maybe I'll get a mani-pedi too. It's important to pamper yourself, you know?

Anyhoo, better run. The maid's running my bath and I want to make sure the water temperature isn't too hot. She can never seem to get it right! 

Hope you're doing well. Write soon! Tata for now!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Bonjour mes amis...

To set the tone of this brand spankin' new blog, here's a joke I was recently told:

What's worse than biting into an apple and finding a worm? The holocaust.