I became a Permanent Resident of Canada! Dreams do come true...in funny, unexpected ways. The man at the immigration office was quite the jovial fellow and seemed more excited than those being endowed Permanent Residence status. Anyway...

What I really want to share about is going to see Dan Savage speak last weekend. I love that man! He is so friggin' hilarious. But what stayed with me more than his humourously delivered sex advice was a tragic story about a lesbian couple vacationing in Florida with their kids. One of the women had to be hospitalized and her partner and kids were not allowed to see her while she was dying in a hospital room. She ended up dying alone. ALONE.

Although her partner had power of attorney and all the entitlements that a spouse would have, the hospital staff ignored all the papers and refused to recognize their domestic partnership because they deemed their relationship illegitimate. At least they could have let her kids see her. But nope, the heartless staff wouldn't budge.

Dan Savage asked, "What heterosexual marriage was saved by refusing these two women to be together?" And I angrily wonder the same question. WTF? The discrimination against gay people in the U.S. is just as appalling as when African-Americans were denied their basic civil rights. I can't believe that this sort of injustice still goes on after all the social progress that's been achieved. I really don't understand.


I never heard of Dorothy Draper until I attended Interior Design Show West back in September, and some panelist happened to mention her as her favorite interior designer and recommended her book. So I searched for the book and discovered that it was published in 1939! But I read the book anyway thinking at least its quaint domestic advice would be give me some good laughs.

Surprisingly, though, I found Draper's ideas refreshingly simple and contemporary. I think most of her principles of decorating are timeless. And her enthusiasm was really inspiring. Although, I wouldn't go for some of Draper's colour and pattern combinations and furniture selection, her advice regarding giving a room balance is very sound and, most importantly, it yields the result you want. Moreover, her approach to decorating is budget-conscious, which would definitely speak to anyone trying to beautify their home today.


Photo by striatic

The other day while I was volunteering at the neighborhood charity thrift shop, an elderly man gruffly tells me I'm not dressed properly. Then he pulls out a red poppy and hands it to me. I smile and say thank you.

Remembrance Day is coming up and so everyone is sporting a cute little red poppy on their coats. Being that I didn't grow up with this tradition in the US, I totally dig this custom.

In regards to volunteering at the thrift shop, the best part has been the characters I encounter, many who are regulars.


The Dude and I sadly didn't dress up for Halloween this year because we were too preoccupied with other things to plan ahead. But we did end up going to the Dunbar Haunted House on Halloween eve. It's been operating for several years now, but I only learned about it last week from someone who happened to be one of the actors whose job is to scare the crap out of visitors.

We waited for over an hour in pouring rain (it's wasn't your typical Vancouver drizzle) to get inside, and I think it was worth standing in the deluge. The scariest room was the one full of clowns, and three of them consecutively jumped out at me. I screamed my head off each time. It was great fun!

We were impressed by how well the house was decorated and all the details that were put into it. The Dunbar Haunted House is actually a private home that the owner decks out in glorious Halloween gore, hires actors to play scary monsters, and opens to the public. Admission is by donation only and all of it goes to various local charities. Pretty cool.