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Archive for April, 2011

The Week that was and what will be …

Here is a complete family photo. Images released from Britain of the royal wedding party.

The week has come and gone we are down to the last week of class with final exams and essays due in the next week. It’s almost over and I need to get through one more writing exam in French and my final interview to come the week following. I have an essay and final exam on next Thursday.

The week was a success and ended on a very high note with the Royal Wedding on Friday morning. I worked two phone shifts this week. One on Thursday which was uneventful. Thank God we have a computer that works in the office.

Thursday night I stayed up all night watching live coverage of the wedding from here in Montreal. I had to work a shift on Friday afternoon which meant that I did not get much sleep going into Friday. I think I finally got to sleep around 7:30 in the morning on Friday and I had to be up by 11 to get on my way by noon on the train out of town.

It was a very hazy day – when I got to the office You Tube was streaming  a rebroadcast of the wedding so I got to see the portion of the day that I missed because I was sleeping.

The Friday shift was again uneventful. I didn’t get may calls so I used the time wisely farming and watching You Tube videos all afternoon. I worked until 6 and came home. I was pretty beat. We ordered pizza in and chilled around the tv until midnight when we both turned in.

Oh, on the way home from working my shift I ran by the Circuit City, I think that’s what it’s called I had to buy some cable to run from the computer to the speakers in the bedroom, because we pipe in Coast to Coast on Friday and Saturday nights.

Cable is expensive, and I also bought a new pair of Logitech speakers because the ones we have were shot. I have to say that they work quite well, the sound is crisp and clear, much better than our old speakers.

I got a good night’s sleep and today we watched some tv, SNL is on now and I will hit the sack in a couple of hours.

Tomorrow I will hit a meeting and get into the books to study for a while.

Tonight You Tube is streaming the Beatification of John Paul II from Rome from 1 to 4 am. I may watch for a little bit.

So that was the week that was.

More to come, stay tuned…


Wedding Photos

Here are the official wedding photos from today’s events.
To embiggen them, click on the photo.


Kate Middleton wedding dress a success

By Claudine Zap, Buzz LogFri, 29 Apr, 2011 10:18 AM GMT+00:00

Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty

The rumors were true: Miss Catherine Middleton’s dress was designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen.

The veil is long, sheer, and modern. It showcases her hair, which she is wearing down. Kate is wearing The veil is made of layers of soft, ivory silk tulle with a trim of hand-embroidered flowers, which was embroidered by the Royal School of Needlework.

The veil is held in place by a Cartier ‘halo’ tiara, lent to Miss Middleton by The Queen. It’s a simple but very elegant look. She is wearing a train. The sleeves are long and lace. The front appears to be cut in a V.

According to the press release, “Miss Middleton wished for her dress to combine tradition and modernity with the artistic vision that characterises Alexander McQueen’s work. Miss Middleton worked closely with Sarah Burton in formulating the design of her dress.”

Kate was successful at keeping not only the look of the dress top secret, but the identity of the designer as well. Quite an accomplishment, considering every detail of the wedding was closely followed by a global media circus.

The princess bride wasn’t keeping dress details just from the public; she was keeping them from her husband-to-be. Prince William finally saw the gown after many of the wedding watchers. Kate went to great lengths to make sure he did not catch a glimpse of it until she met him at the altar.


William’s surprising uniform choice honors servicemen

By Martin Rogers Yahoo! StaffFri, 29 Apr, 2011 7:11 AM GMT+00:00

(Photo by Ferdaus Shamim/WireImage)

LONDON – Prince William has opted for a surprising choice of uniform for his wedding to Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey on Friday.

Britain’s future King will walk down the aisle wearing his bright red tunic from his honorary position as colonel of the Irish Guards, a regiment of the British Army which has spent the last six months deployed in Afghanistan, where three of their members were killed in action.

William has not served directly with the unit, but was afforded the honorary title of Colonel due to his growing status as a senior member of the Royal Family, where he is second in line to the throne.

It was widely expected that the prince would instead get married in his formal Royal Air Force uniform, the service in which he is currently employed as a search and rescue helicopter pilot. Bookmakers Paddy Power even stopped taking bets on that choice, after more than 90 per cent of gamblers placed money on the specific outcome.

However, St James’s Palace officials confirmed that William had instead taken the step of using his highest ranking uniform, partially to honor those servicemen who lost their lives in combat. The ensemble will give him a truly regal look and will be the height of grandeur and propriety for the grand occasion.

His outfit contains a crimson and gold sash and gold sword slings, which are to be worn when officers of the unit are in the presence of a royal. He will not, as speculated, wear a sword, but will wear a Garter Sash with the Wings of the Royal Air Force, plus military medallions the Garter Star and the Golden Jubilee Medal.

William’s dazzling tunic is distinctive in that the buttons are arranged in groups of four, featuring logos of the Harp of Ireland topped by the Crown Imperial motif of the British monarchy.

Another option for William would have been to wear the uniform of the Blues and Royals, the army regiment which he was commissioned into after graduating from the Sandhurst military training academy.

Instead, that uniform will be worn by his brother and best man Prince Harry. Harry’s gear will come complete with aiguillettes – official decorative tags – a cross-belt and a gold waist belt with sword slings, but also no sword.

His attire will be adorned with badges of the Wings of the Army Air Corps, the Golden Jubilee Medal and the Afghanistan Campaign medal. Harry spent 10 weeks serving in Afghanistan until February 2008, before his tour of duty was revealed by a German newspaper and he was brought home.


The Wedding Day April 29, 2011

Photo Courtesy: Maria Testino

The first photo released just today for the wedding program.

“We are both so delighted that you are able to join us in celebrating what we hope will be one of the happiest days of our lives,” write “William” and “Catherine” in the program. “The affection shown to us by so many people during our engagement has been incredibly moving, and has touched us both deeply. We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone most sincerely for their kindness.”

*** *** *** ***

LONDON – Prince William and Kate Middleton have received the titles of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Buckingham Palace said Friday.

William’s dukedom is one of three titles bestowed by his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II to mark his marriage to Middleton at Westminster Abbey. The titles also apply to Middleton.

William also became the Earl of Strathearn and Baron Carrickfergus, which means Middleton will become the Countess of Strathearn and Baroness Carrickfergus.

The second Duke of Cambridge, Prince Adolphus Frederick, was the seventh son of King George III. Defying the Royal Marriage Act, he married his mistress, Sarah Louisa Fairbrother, an actress and a commoner, in 1847. Since the marriage wasn’t legal, his children were all illegitimate.

The palace announced the titles in a statement Friday.


Rainy Days and Tuesdays …

Courtesy: Mind-State

They say that it is supposed to rain and rain and rain some more. But they haven’t been very good at forecasting in recent days. The city was supposed to get a deluge of rain, but that didn’t happen. It’s just a little drizzly out, enough to make it dark and gloomy.

There is a hockey game tonight, so that affected tonight’s numbers. But still, we had a good turn out nonetheless. In the end the night turned out good. The new format is flourishing and there is money in the kitty to cover prudent reserve.

This is an odd month, because I have back to back shifts at the phones on Thursday (my 4th Thursday) and on Friday (my 5th Friday). I got a call from the DLP the other night for my Friday, before I got a call for my Thursday, and for a moment I thought I missed a shift, but I didn’t.

We are coming to the end of term at Dawson. Two more weeks and everything will be finished. I don’t have the term book for summer studies yet. I have a few things that have to get done in the next few days and a final project that I have yet to work on for French. (let us pray…)

The 2011 election campaign is in its final days and the push is on for all parties to get out the message. Facebook has been a crucial tool in getting the vote out and we are hoping that we get a good turnout at the polls this coming Monday.

If you’re a citizen and you can vote – there is no excuse for you not to vote. The very future of Canada hangs in the balance. People we have to vote. Voting is a privilege, exercise your right and get out there and vote. There are several mass media campaigns out there on Facebook, Twitter and online to get people to the polls next week. You Tube is active with all parties posting ads on the Tube.

That’s about it from here tonight.

I need to eat dinner and do some homework. Yay Homework …

More to come, stay tuned.


Canada Votes …


‘Terra incognita’: Poll projects 100 seats for surging NDP

I voted today in early voting … Orange all the way …

PATRICK BRETHOUR

VANCOUVER— Globe and Mail Update
Posted on Monday, April 25, 2011 7:47PM EDT

The NDP is rapidly outdistancing the Liberals and has whittled the Conservative lead to single digits – a level of support that would see Jack Layton win 100 seats on May 2, says the latest poll from EKOS Research.

Under that scenario, the NDP would still come in second in seat count to the Conservatives, but the support of the third-place Liberals would give Mr. Layton a working majority in the House of Commons.

“We’re in terra incognita here,” EKOS president Frank Graves said.

The EKOS poll, conducted from April 22 to April 24, gave the Conservatives 33.7-per-cent support nationally among decided and leaning voters; the NDP had 28-per-cent support; the Liberals, 23.7 per cent; the Green Party, 7.2 per cent; and the Bloc Québécois, 6.2 per cent.

If those numbers held true on election day, it would be the worst showing in the history of the Liberal Party, and the best result by far for the NDP. A seat projection using the EKOS poll indicated the Conservatives would lose seats, dropping to 131, while the NDP would garner 100 seats, more than double its previous best result; more than half of those seats would come from Quebec. The Liberal caucus would be much reduced, falling to 62 seats. And the Bloc would be a shadow of itself, with a caucus of just 14 MPs.

The EKOS poll is showing stronger levels of support for the NDP in Ontario and the Atlantic provinces than other polls, but the trend of sharply rising poll numbers for the party is consistent with other surveys. The level of support for the Conservatives is lower than other recent surveys – and the size of the Tory lead is about half of other polls.

In Quebec, the New Democrats lead with 38.7 per cent of the vote, with the Bloc far back at 25.2 per cent, while the Conservative support pegged at 14.7 per cent and the Liberals in fourth place with 13.1 per cent.

The poll of 2,783 voters is considered to be accurate within 1.8 percentage points. As with other polls, the margin of error for regional breakdowns is much higher.


Exsultet …

Tonight took us to Christ Church Cathedral for the Great Easter Vigil Celebration. The weather cooperated and the sun was shining and the clouds had gone, although it was quite breezy outside, once the fire was lit – it burned furiously and they could not keep the tapers lit in order to light the Paschal Candles.

In the end all the candles were lit and carried into the darkened church for the service to begin.

Rejoice, heavenly powers! Sing, choirs of angels!
Exult, all creation around God’s throne!
Jesus Christ, our King, is risen!
Sound the trumpet of salvation!

Rejoice, O earth, in shining splendor,
radiant in the brightness of your King!
Christ has conquered! Glory fills you!
Darkness vanishes for ever!

Rejoice, O Mother Church! Exult in glory!
The risen Savior shines upon you!
Let this place resound with joy,
echoing the mighty song of all God’s people!

My dearest friends,
standing with me in this holy light,
join me in asking God for mercy,

that he may give his unworthy minister
grace to sing his Easter praises.

Deacon: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Deacon: Lift up your hearts.
People: We lift them up to the Lord.
Deacon: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
People: It is right to give him thanks and praise.

It is truly right
that with full hearts and minds and voices
we should praise the unseen God, the all-powerful Father,
and his only Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.

For Christ has ransomed us with his blood,
and paid for us the price of Adam’s sin to our eternal Father!

This is our passover feast,
when Christ, the true Lamb, is slain,
whose blood consecrates the homes of all believers.

This is the night
when first you saved our fathers:
you freed the people of Israel from their slavery
and led them dry-shod through the sea.

This is the night
when the pillar of fire destroyed the darkness of sin!

This is the night
when Christians everywhere,
washed clean of sin and freed from all defilement,
are restored to grace and grow together in holiness.

This is the night
when Jesus Christ broke the chains of death
and rose triumphant from the grave.

What good would life have been to us,
had Christ not come as our Redeemer?
Father, how wonderful your care for us!
How boundless your merciful love!
To ransom a slave you gave away your Son.

O happy fault,
O necessary sin of Adam,
which gained for us so great a Redeemer!

Most blessed of all nights,
chosen by God to see Christ rising from the dead!

Of this night scripture says:
“The night will be as clear as day:
it will become my light, my joy.”

The power of this holy night dispels all evil,
washes guilt away, restores lost innocence,
brings mourners joy;
it casts out hatred, brings us peace,
and humbles earthly pride.

Night truly blessed when heaven is wedded to earth
and man is reconciled with God!

Therefore, heavenly Father,
in the joy of this night,
receive our evening sacrifice of praise,
your Church’s solemn offering.

Accept this Easter candle,
a flame divided but undimmed,
a pillar of fire that glows to the honor of God.

(For it is fed by the melting wax,
which the mother bee brought forth
to make this precious candle.)

Let it mingle with the lights of heaven
and continue bravely burning
to dispel the darkness of this night!

May the Morning Star which never sets
find this flame still burning:
Christ, that Morning Star,
who came back from the dead,
and shed his peaceful light on all mankind,
your Son, who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

This is one of the most beautiful pieces of music to begin the Easter Vigil Mass, and here at the Cathedral it is sung in English and French, alternating from one to the other. The entire service was bilingual tonight. And thanks to my French education – this year I was a little more literate and mt reading and singing skills are much better.

There were three baptisms and several confirmations this year it was beautiful. Lot of singing by the choir. I love heavenly music. I was able to join my mentor Donald for the service. He was free tonight for service, tomorrow he has two services to participate in at St. Matthias in Westmount.

A good night was had by all …

Jesus has Risen, He is Risen indeed …


Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene

The Empty Tomb

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed.  (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.)  Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.

Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene

Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.

They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?”

“They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”  At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.

He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”

Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”

Jesus said to her, “Mary.”

She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).

Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.


Kandy Krew …

Courtesy: Tumblr

Anybody who watches videos on You Tube must know about Vlog Candy. This channel has been one of my favorite channels on You Tube for years now. Andrew, John, Zach, Megan and Aubrey they are five incredibly creative people on the Tube.

Sadly, this week is all about goodbyes. The channel is coming to an end, but as I learned, the channel will stay up and running so we can watch their videos in the future. We shall see what incarnates next for these creative folks.

*** *** *** ***

Spring may have begun, but you’d never know it by the weather. It has been cold, cold enough that I am still wearing my winter jacket out and about. And there is a rain warning in effect by Environment Canada. They say it’s gonna pour down rain, snow and ice pellets over the next three days. UGH !!!

Today was like any other day. Tuesdays are always the same. Set up was a breeze and we had about a dozen folks show up for the meeting. There were three generations of sobriety at the meeting tonight. There was me, my sponsor and his sponsor who has been sober since God was a boy. Almost 60 years now.

We read from the Big Book once again, “There is a solution.” I have two Big Books, one Third edition and one Fourth edition. Both of these books have seen action over the years. Most of the first 164 pages of the book are highlit in different colors over the years and there are dates and notes in the margins of the book from countless step series and readings.

It was a good meeting, a small group of people with varying time in sobriety made for great discussion. The reading went a little long which meant that the meeting went a little long, which isn’t a bad thing, we might shorten the read next week, as we are tweaking the way the meeting goes. It was our third week with the new format, it seems to be working ok. We are seeing the same faces which is a good thing.

*** *** *** ***

We are coming to the end of term this month, three weeks to make it all count. We are into Buddhism in our philosophy class which is good for me, a familiar topic seeing I have a degree in Religious Study, and I spent a good deal of time studying Eastern Religious Traditions.

Tomorrow I have my final reading test, god help us all. Then it is on the the final interview for the bulk of the grade. This is the one assignment that I cannot fail, because it will carry me forwards into the next French class during the summer. I have one more unit to go before I start regular French classes. There are two levels of study at Dawson depending on where you started based on your knowledge of the second language. I started from the beginning and the class I am in now is the second of three courses at this level of study.

That’s all I have for you tonight.

More to come, stay tuned…


So So Saturday …

Courtesy: Sixtynine

There is a rain advisory in effect for the city. It is (2c) right now and it was cold and blustery out there tonight. A little warm for snow, but cold enough for sleet and ice pellets. The sidewalks are a bit slippery and it is quite miserable out.

Last night it was just cold out, and I ventured out to NDG for a meeting visiting some old friends at Friday West End. It was nice to get over there, since it has been a while since the gang of three went there.

Have bus pass – will travel …

Blame it on the weather – when it snows people don’t come to meetings, when it is 90 degrees out people don’t show up. And so it goes, when it is raining and cold out, people stay in. Add to this there was hockey tonight so the meeting was sparse in Verdun. Just a handful of people. It was nice just to get out and see some friends.

I’ve been getting to meetings as regularly as I can, with time on my hands.

We have a full week of class this coming week, and then Easter next weekend, so we won’t have class on Easter Monday. There are only a few weeks left of term. I have an essay to write for my philosophy class and in course class work to finish for next Thursday. The essay is due on the 4th of May.

With a few weeks left of French, our final project is a huge percentage towards our final grade, and I cannot fail that oral interview. We don’t have the topic at hand yet, she has yet to give us that information.

Not much else going on here tonight.

SNL is on soon.

More to come, stay tuned…


Melancholy …

Courtesy: Thiswillnotdefineus

This post has been in my mind for the past couple of days. I should have written it at the first point that I put it together, but I didn’t feel like writing late at night, but late at night is when I do my best work. I do homework in the night, and it serves me well, because my mind is fully engaged with the material.

I told you some time ago that I had been revisiting some old stories from the past, namely those dealing with life and AIDS. And every time I do this action it always ends up in me becoming melancholy. Though this time it did not consume me like it usually does.

How many story tellers are there that have survived the scourge of AIDS. Those of us who lived through it and are still breathing today? I only know a few of those men personally. But I am sure there are a good number today.

Let me preface this writing by saying that every time I go to the doctor it is very mechanical. The same ritual every three months. I go drop labs and I wait the perfunctory three weeks and go see my doctor. I get triaged  and they take my particular information and stats. The doc comes in, does his ritual poke and prod and says the numbers are great, he says, as usual, I need to loose some weight and such and so forth and that is that.

He doesn’t look backwards and we never talk about survival. That is just implicit as long as the numbers are nominal, there is no discussion about dying.

So I read two books in the last few weeks that were written by the late Paul Monette, a seminal writer of AIDS literature, right from the middle of the battle zone. He wrote as it happened, raw and in your face. He tells a sordid story of pain, hell and misery. Back when there were no solutions, only stabs in the dark with treatments that might work but were not proven.

Every time I wade into the past I come away with a different result. I wrote a few days ago that I was feeling a little out of sorts, trying to find my groove still waiting for that excitement to come in sobriety.

Several topics have been shared over several platforms that I engage in. One of my friends just turned 40, another friend asked the question “Do you think that you grew up too fast?” There are many different discussions going on in the gay You Tube World.

Today is Friday – the National Day of Silence. To bring attention to LGBTQ bullying in the world.

So let me talk about growing up.

I had adult size issues on my plate before I left junior high school. Coming from an alcoholic home we grew up, (my brother and I) quickly. We learned house hold chores, yard work and we learned how to care for our vehicles.

Mom and dad worked around the clock for many years, taking turns in shifts raising their kids. And who could complain? We had everything we needed and the family grew up as it did. They say you should never live with regrets. And i don’t.

When illness hit our family early on, I was thrust into the mix by my father hoping against hope that I would serve him well, which did not happen, and to this day it is my thought that he never forgave me for not saving his mother from the suffering of the stroke that took her life many years later.

I knew very early on what was happening. I was a good listener. I feasted on words that came out of every mouth in my young life. I learned a great many things in my young life. By the time I moved out of the house I had enough knowledge in my head to get me through any situation. What I lacked though, the one kicker was responsibility. Paying bills, taking care of adult issues surrounding money and all of that. I failed miserably at that point.

I had an addiction, that took me to the gates of hell, and I had no idea, it is only in retrospect that I can safely say that someone up there likes me because I survived that, although not unscathed.

Illness, I know a lot about illness and death. Illness forces you to grow up immediately even if you don’t know what the hell you are doing, you grow up anyways. I think I hit my 40’s when I was just in my twenties.

Living through the scourge of AIDS taught me a great many things about men, life and survival. Not to mention death …

I always say that when they invent a viable time machine that I know exactly where I would go and why. I would go back to when it all started. All of my friends would be alive – and life would be there for me to revisit. I often revisit that time in my life in my memories often. Every time I read the old stories they take me right back to the fight for our lives.

If I did not have the men and women in my life that I did then, I would surely have died. What did I learn? To live as if I were dying, because that’s what we were doing for so many years. But the funny thing was I survived. Was it because of me or in spite of myself? How did I escape the horrors that took so many of my friends to their graves? I have no idea.

They gave me all that I could take. Hoping against hope that I would walk away from this scourge with my dignity in tact. Every year that I live I tack another year onto my life record. Couple that with sobriety and you have a pretty strong combination. Surviving AIDS in sobriety is pretty sweet.

I wonder what is still on the table at times? I wonder about where I am in my life, and what I am supposed to be doing. I need a job, I need a life, not that I want out of the one I am in. But I need some tangible way to spend the mental cash I have in the bank. At 43 I have nothing to show for my time except two diplomas that are still in their envelopes from the day they were given to me.

What is my destiny? Who am I supposed to become, and I am becoming him?

All I have are stories.

I have written most of them already. All I can do now is write about today and what life is showing me right now. I am living in the moment. When I am mindful of the moment, I can write like this. Crank up the tunes and just sit and type until my brain is empty.

Sometimes I get a twang of survivors guilt. It doesn’t last long because I don’t have a death wish. I don’t sit and ponder my utter demise. As long as I am breathing then there is no need to think about death. And that bothers me to a degree. People are living with AIDS much longer, thank god I have great medical care. I could be stuck in other places scraping the pavement trying to pay my way and pay for drugs. Been there done that.

I am starting to fade, which means I should bring this to a close before I start rambling all over the place. Too  many thoughts. I miss my friends.

That’s all for right now.

More to come, stay tuned …


STOP the Conservatives from winning … NOW !!!

 

If you live in Canada and want to end Stephen Harpers ability to form a government in any form, click the link below for your riding and get involved to make sure the Conservatives don’t win another election.

Welcome to ProjectDemocracy.ca.

Canadians don’t have an electoral system that directly reflects the ballot box.  With our ‘first-past-the-post’ electoral system, vote splitting means Canadians could end up with a majority Harper Government with as little as 35 percent of the popular vote.  This is not the outcome most Canadians want, and avoiding it requires voter knowledge and cooperation.

In the last election voteforenvironment.ca was the go-to site for nearly half a million unique visitors who clicked in time and again to determine how they could mark their ballot to get an acceptable electoral outcome.   If you were one of those 440,000 – congratulations, it worked!  On the last day that public opinion polls were available, the VFE website model showed that the Conservatives were on track to win 152 seats, but on Monday, they were elected in 143.  Our analysis shows thousands of visits to our advice regarding the candidate with the best chance to beat the Conservative in key ridings. (link here for 2008 analysis)

ProjectDemocracy.ca builds on voteforenvironment.ca.  The stakes for our environment were very high in 2008, and remain at risk.  Since then it has become even clearer that Harper is prepared to ignore the basic tenets of our democracy to keep in power and pursue his ideological agenda.  For all those who care deeply about our democracy, stopping the Harper machine is job one.

Please check your riding, sign-up and spread the word (especially to people you may know in key ridings).


Whisper …

 

Courtesy: Milkboy13

The week is progressing as it will. The weather has been great these past couple of days. It’s a little cool out tonight.

I ran all of my errands on the way out today before getting to the church. It took me little time to set up. And I was pleasantly surprised to see people show up early for the meeting. That’s why I get there with plenty of time before the meeting starts, not to mention, it takes 45 minutes for the coffee pot to perk.

I usually make two pots of coffee, one regular in the larger perk pot and a smaller 12 cup coffee maker for decaf. Last week I didn’t make decaf and people complained about it. You can never cut a break. If you make 2 pots of coffee usually one never gets drank. It seems, decaf is on the rebound.

If we don’t put out sweets before the meeting, people get ancy. I only bought one box of cookies today and by the time the meeting started, all the cookies got eaten. Which means I need to buy 2 boxes for next week.

My sponsor got to talking with the folks at the other meeting that opened up down the road from us and told them that we are contesting the naming of their meeting because they are knocking off our group and that is causing confusion in the community as to who is really the “beginners…”

We have a call in to our DCM alternate to bring this issue up to the GSO to get this issue resolved before the end of the month. The conflict is within the 4th tradition… “Each group should be autonomous, except in matter affecting other groups or AA as a whole.” This whole naming of a new group is causing consternation in the community.

Last week we had 20 people for the meeting. Tonight we better’d that number with 30 people. Many of them were newbies, and a good number of them were women. A lot of our visitors tonight were new faces to our meeting. It is really great to see so many women coming to our meeting. For the longest time  we had been lacking in female attendees.

We opened with a reading from the Twelve and Twelve, step one. It was a great evening. Everybody got a chance to share. We even went a little long to make sure we got everyone in.

It was also nice to see some old faces show up. One of my friends, Bob, is an old timer and I’ve seen him on and off for the last ten years that I’ve been in the rooms. People are getting older some have fallen away, and tonight Bob was on point and talked about getting back to meetings because he is not aging very well and needs to reconnect – it was great to see him tonight.

A good night was had by all …

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The other night I watched an episode of Oprah’s Master Class on OWN network, and she was talking about finding your joy, finding that energy from within and working towards your ultimate abilities. And she mentioned the universal power we can all tap into. That power that is greater than ourselves. And she spoke about that connection … The closer you get to that universal power the more in tune you are with yourself to move forwards.

This is not coming across like I want it to as I am typing … I have been a bit disconnected from that universal spirit within me. I’ve been trying to reconnect or move closer to that point within me that is divine. I haven’t been listening very well for that little small voice from within.

Doing the same thing day in and day out, week in and week out it is almost becoming mundane. I have stepped up my game in the areas of prayer and meditation. Getting to meetings on days off from class. And this new format on Tuesday has us looking at things most of us with time, take for granted, because there is distance for us from our last drink to today …

If you forget, there is a good chance that you could go back there …

I’ve been spending time trying to find myself once again. What is it that I am supposed to be doing now? Where is the next puzzle piece for me to find in my journey here? I am trying to find that inspiration that used to fuel my life.

"Life is about growth and change. When you are no longer doing that—that is your whisper; that is your whisper that you are supposed to do something else."

 

"You are not your past. You are not all the things that have happened to you. You are the possibility of what can be."

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As I grow up and move on in my life, I wonder at times, what the hell am I doing? and Why am I still doing the same thing … I remarked when I took my 9 year chip that I had hoped that something exciting would happen during this tenth year of working on myself and learning more about sobriety at this stage of the game… Maybe I am missing the ball or maybe I am not paying close enough attention to my guide within.

Maybe I am scared of stepping out of my comfort zone to even attempt something grand. There is a Canada commercial that runs on tv here that is very beautiful and it talks about “During your life, make sure that there is at least one chapter that is extraordinary.”

I’ve yet to write that chapter of my life. There are things that I want to do in this life, with the time I have left. There are things I want to see, places I want to go, yet I don’t know what intention to put out there to make these things manifest in my life. I think that if I could find that point of passion within me and pay closer attention to my spirit, that the world would open itself up and all those things I want to do will manifest.

That’s the whole journey of life, to become who we were meant to be, to find our passion and make it work…

"I say the universe speaks to us, always, first in whispers."

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I am not listening for the whisper. I have fallen into a quiet place where that voice isn’t making sense. The universe speaks in whispers, if we don’t pay attention to the whisper, the we get thumped on the side of our heads, and if we still don’t pay attention, we get a brick upside of the head, and finally, the brick wall falls upon us …

I have forgotten what that whisper sounds like. And I want to find it again. I need a change. I need for something exciting to drop into my life and really get me going. At times I think that I am just wasting time doing what I am doing, still in school, destined to be a student until the money runs out and I have to get out there and do something with my education.

That’s the one thing that did not happen when I graduated university, nothing happened. Were those six years wasted time and money? Two degrees in religion and pastoral ministry have not served me at all. I have been writing for years here for a few people who come and read, but more for myself.

I am up for a change … How do we get the universe to give up its secrets? Am I missing something? Am I not aligned in the proper way? Do I need to find that point of connection?

Maybe I’ve become a little complacent. Who knew I’d live this long and what really do I have to look forwards to in this life? I think that people who live with life illness get caught in this frame of mind that limits the ability to dream big and expect great things to happen. We step back from the universe stuck in this position of never getting forwards, always settling for right now.

I need to get out of that stupor. I need a life. I need something exciting to happen, or sobriety is a waste of time and effort … I have skills and experience and a university education and years of life experience to put on the line.

I need to find that whisper …