Thursday, September 18, 2008

Glorious Device... Welcome Home

Well, I did it. I got myself an iphone. I have been wanting one for ages now and decided that I would get myself one after comps were done. I had hoped to have it before I left for London, but sadly I did not... so I had to get it when I got home.

So yesterday I went down to a Roger's store and picked myself up an iphone.

I love it. So very much.

I just keep wanting to touch it and play with it. Today, thanks to Anthony, I learned how to make my own ring tones for it. This might be the best investment I have ever made.

Currently I am putting some music on it and updating the applications that are avaliable for it - just added a cool new google feature!

mmmm - iphone goodness.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Talk to you later...

I am please to announce that my comps are over...I wrote paper two on Thursday...and although i am not as comfortable with how I handled the exam as I would want to be, I am just glad that it is over.

Before I start the new school year and all the work that it will entail, I am heading off to London to spend a week with Anthony.

So, I will see you all later... if I feel like posting, I will :) If not, well... talk to you when I get back

time to relax... thank goodness!!!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Soundtracks, William Blake, Hurricanes... oh my,

I am currently sitting at my dining room table listening to an on-line classical radio station while reading William Blake and drinking Earl Grey tea. This is a rather idyllic situation for my Labour day, even if I have this damn exam still hanging over my head.

I sometime wonder if I am really smart enough to get Blake, or do I just have a total lack of religious knowledge? I have read parts of the Bible - mainly the stuff the Blake and Milton are interested in - but I still have trouble getting exactly what the hell he is saying. I read a good introduction to him just now and kinda have a better sense of him, but am about to go on and read his actual poetry, which is a bit daunting for me.

Besides that I am taking a break from listening to the Brideshead Revisited score again... I can't stop listening to it. I became totally obsessed with it since we saw it the last friday...I immediately went and got it from Itunes and just love it. I urge you to go see the movie and then just let the score wash over you... it is a toned down, sparse piano and violin score at times that just haunts you. Plus the movie is quite excellent. For those in Toronto, Bloor cinema is playing it next week, tickets are only 6 bucks, or 3 for members.

I have been keeping track of the growing Gustav coverage in the south, it appears as though New Orleans is being hit again. The Levees are breaking once again. While it is not expected to be as bad as Katrina was 3 years ago (can you believe that was 3 years ago), it is still going to be bad if the city starts to flood again. The storm hit Cuba quite hard as well, which worries me since Tara is currently vacationing there... I hope she is safe.

Well, I should get back to it. Happy Labour Day everyone... enjoy your restful day!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Beginning of the end...

Tomorrow marks the beginning of the end of my summer of comps reading. The first exam happens at 9:30 am... yes, that is right, I will soon be finally free of Comps. And I cannot tell you how FUCKING HAPPY I AM!!!

This summer I have been immersed in literature that I never thought I would have to encounter again. People know that I like my lit, but that I like what I like and what I don't like is early stuff. I can do Shakespeare, but the other stuff... not so much.

Regardless, starting tomorrow I can see the light at the end of a very long and very arduous tunnel. Its been a great summer, but always marred by the reading I had to do and the studying I had to endure.

I spent my morning review Ben Jonson's poetry - I had a moment where I was actually enjoying it, which goes against my nature since I am not such a big fan of him otherwise. I then had a weird encounter with a crazy man at Starbucks, who informed the cafe that Bay-Bloor Radio was out to get him, along with the CBC. Also, random woman walking along Bloor took her shirt off and stared screaming about her breasts.

It was an odd morning...

Alright, I must get going here... Oh I wanted to make sure everyone knows to get the Globe and Mail tomorrow, there is a feature on the Sexual Diversity Program in it, and I have my picture along side the article!

One more day till exam 1, 8 more days till exam 2, 10 more days till I get on a buss to London, ON. (I can do this!)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Ok, they can stop leaving now...

Today I had to say good-bye to one of my first friends here in Toronto. Marcos is flying to Vancouver to start his PhD at SFU in Communications this fall. Yes, I do find it rather ironic that a year after I arrive in Toronto from Vancouver, after having finished my MA at SFU a close of friend of mine is making the same journey, only backwards.

Marcos has been a great friend - he gave me my first look at Toronto, I had my first G&T with him here... we're two very bitchy queens together. (Well I think he's more queeny than I am... but who's counting right?)

I wish him all the best in Vancouver, I know he will thrive there and will totally love it! If any of my Vancouver family wants to take a Toronto transplant under their wing, let me know and I will hook you up with one of the nicest, funniest, sweetest guys ever.

I'm gonna miss him, a lot.

A small request to my friends here in Toronto... STOP LEAVING! Seriously... they're dropping like flies.

Oh, and I write my first Comps exam in less than 48 hours... not nervous at all! Nope.

Now Marcos, about that Hermes scarf....

Monday, August 25, 2008

What have you eaten?

Very good Taste, out of the UK, recently put together a list of the 100 things every human should eat in their lifetime.

I have not done a tally of my number - but I will. I think it might be large. What is your score?

Find the list here: 100 eats

***NOTE: The bunny is NOT, I repeat NOT, on the list.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

One Year...Reflections on a City of Friends

**Photo caption: This was me a few weeks ago at Kate's going away party.

I have been wracking my brain trying to figure out how exactly I would write this post... it is extremely difficult to squish an entire year into the space of one blog entry. I mean, it can be done... but should it?

As many of you know, this year has been a weird one for me. Everyone who knows me, from home, has told me that moving to Toronto was one of the best things I could ever have done for myself. It changed me in ways that I never thought moving would... being in this city has made me into a very confident, self assured, and quite independent individual. I have thrived in the PhD program, found a niche for myself in the English Program, as well as Sexual Diversities Program. I took a class (Public Feelings) that began to shape the direction of my dissertation, and even of late have been invited to contribute to the first edited collection on gay pulps. As Christine pointed out on her last visit to Toronto, I'm a very different person than she knew in Vancouver... and I have to admit, I like this new me.

But of course, there have been strange things in my life - complications with diabetes that landed me in the hospital in December - but I put these complications in their place and told them to fuck off. Upon to returning to Toronto in January I settled back into a good routine, seeing friends, working my ass off, and living life. I got to go back to San Francisco in March, which rocked my world. I moved once, leaving the living alone behind to try it with Lindsey as a roommate, which has proven to be one of the smartest moves I've made yet.

Which brings me around to friends... exactly how can I talk about my friends here in Toronto? Earlier this year, after a presentation in one of my classes, someone asked me if they could be part of my kinship group... well, without knowing it, they already were. The group of friends I've made here are more than just friends, they are kin.

They are one of the best, most amazing, incredible groups of people I've ever known. Lindsey has been a constant rock of support and fun and... oh well she's just one of my favorite people ever! And I love living with her. (Even if she thought my name was Scott when we first met, and did not know how to return my phone call...) Britt has become someone I am excited to see either on line or in, who else is going to want Ice Cream every single time I do? Vanessa taught me the miracle of Vegan cooking... and although I am still a meat eater, at least I can also do damn good things with flax seeds... she's also taught me the fine art of faux hip-hop talk, what more can I ask for? Kate and Danny are two unbelieveably intelligent people that I look up to and cannot wait to see what lies ahead for them... even if I am kinda jealous of a full ride to Columbia. Erin, Melissa, Emma, Julia, Michael and Claire are the best comps group an anxious boy could ever need... and are quickly becoming super close friends Alysa is a newly discovered friend - the insults (towards other people) run rampant! And then, we have Tara...all I need to say is 5 am JD drunk and let me tell you my dating history! Marcos... you were my first friend here in Toronto and are one of the best. Finally, we come to Ariel... How do I talk about Ariel? Ariel and I are... well soulmates in some ways. We share a love for dancing, drinking, Elizabeth Taylor.... I find it hard to sum up Ariel and I...she's just Ariel. Which is one of the best things I could say, I think. I am not sure if I could express how much these people mean to me... how much I have come to care for them, worry about them, and am truly blessed to know them.

Which brings me to some of the newer additions to my Toronto life: Shawn and Dave came into my life this summer to make my small gay life grow a bit. I suddenly have someone who is dorky about Shakespeare, makes great Sangria, and will let me visit their suburban paradise whenever I need to get out of the city. And last, but no where near least, is Anthony. Anthony has reminded me about a lot of things that I forgot, things I am glad to be remembering... I smile when I see him, I smile when I talk to him... he's a great person and I am happy to have him in my life. (I even don't mind going to London...)

I have watched friends come into my life, and sadly I have felt shifts in friendships this year that made me see some step out of my life... and these past few months, I've watched a couple fly off to other places: Holly to Paris, Melissa to India, Danny to New York, Sos to Indiana, Kate to South America. (ok, that's a lot of people!).

So, where am I a year later after driving into Toronto all sweaty and tired and irritated? I am happy. I am stressed that I have to write comps in a week... but I am happy. I am a very different (and thinner) Matt than the one that left Vancouver 12 months and 5 days ago. Toronto changed me... and I love it for that. I still miss home... I miss my mom, sister, nephews, Jordan and my entire extended family there. I miss the water. I miss the trees. I miss JJ Bean coffee.

I have thrived... You didn't kill me Toronto, instead I think we became friends.

Bloor Street Tears (Formerly Everyone Say Repressed Homosexuality)

A blog about the life and times of a Toronto Grad Student living in Downtown Toronto