Communicator, cooker, drinker, poet. Grew up in a mining town, wore a hard hat.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

a day on hold with rogers: capitlism and efficiency

i spent the day on hold with rogers. and by day, i mean two and half hours. and by rogers, i mean the assholes to whom i pay $200 a month in useless charges which are consistently itemized in a language other than english and subtotaled using formulas my mind has not the means to comprehend. i don't like phone companies.

i work for a phone company. and it's entirely possible that the policies i assist in implementing are as frustrating to my customers as rogers' policies are to me. which brings me to my next point: does capitalism really breed efficiency?

viki: all capitalism does is breed efficiency. but the question we need to ask ourselves is: do we want our world to prioritize efficiency over the quality of human experience? an obsession with the bottom line leads to a society which serves the interests of imaginary flows of capital above those of the people.

sashimi (the dog): arf. wag tail. lick toes of master. the question we need to ask ourselves is: where is the food?

kate: the problem with macro efficiency is that is breeds micro inefficiencies. where are we seeking efficiency? in financial models of broad scope. it is decidely efficient for ted rogers to hire morons to staff his call centre, because it keeps his labour costs low. and it's likely that somewhere in the heart of the great red beast there is a spreadsheet which measures levels of customer resentment, the likelyhood of lost revenue because of policies that are designed to a person the run around until they don't want to run around anymore and just charge the damn thing to their visa and have a beer instead. i'm having a beer. the cost of efficient customer/customer service interactions (i.e. giving reps the training and power to deal with situations as they see fit) is definitely greater than the cost of crediting the customers who are willing to wait to speak to supervisors, and more dangerous as well. i waited nearly two and a half hours on hold today, which, from my individual perspective, is as far from efficiency as you could possibly get. this efficiency that our economic system is allegedly breeding minimizes not human hardships, not human irriations, not human frustrations, but is rather designed to maximize the amount of money that makes it to the top. there is also a distinct lack of competition in the canadian telecommunications sector, but that's a matter for another rant.

the pizza is here.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

post-modern bohemian cake

the roommate (god bless her soon to be vietnam-loving-english-teaching soul) has made a cake. she added a touch of rat poo and extra-thick chocolate icing for taste. actually, the rats added the poo and she just took care of the icing, but it's a group effort, so credit is shared equally amongst all family members.

Monday, August 27, 2007

peter says i'm published dammit

i'm toying with the idea of applying for the cbc literary awards. like a responsible contest participant i went online and read the contest terms & conditions. they're accepting only unpublished work. in my case, it's a 1000-2000 words of poetry for a potential first prize of $6000, a second prize of $4000. yeeeeaaaaah. there are a couple of road blocks: (1) you basically have to be michael ondaatje to walk away it. he's a former winner. and although the contest requires that you submit unpublished work, it doesn't require that you be unpublished. which basically means that every canadian author with six hours on their hands and a few pages of unpublished poetry is vying for the cash. (2) your work has to be unpublished. i know this is beginning to sound repetitive, but this is a key point for me: the cbc considers blogs a form of publication! all of the good stuff i've posted over the past year and change is therefore ineligible for competition. it's not as though i don't have little diamonds in the rough kicking around my desktop, but having to be concerned that they've been published on some random website and are therefore ineligible is a pain in my ass. i love google, but not in this case. having random house pay you eight grand to put out a chapbook is one thing, but creating and posting a blog entry is considered equivalent? (3) the winning entries are published in air canada's En Route in-flight magazine. you've read it, don't lie, we all have. the En Route magazine, in case you haven't guessed, is an issue for a number of reasons: first and foremost, no air canada exec in their right and sober mind is going to publish a kate leadbeater poem, primarily because kate leadbeater poems inevitably contain sex (and all the components thereof: pussy, cock, tits, ass, etc.), swearing, drinking, smoking, drugs, small children being assautled in...okay i'm exaggerating. but STILL. the cbc literary awards were clearly designed to fuck me. and you peter mansbridge, alleged guardian angel of mine, have seriously disappointed.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

august, winter & alpacas

i wore a sweatshirt last night, it was cold, slept with the windows closed, too. woke up this morning to discover it was still cold, which simply isn't right. august is too early for hints of winter, and maybe it's because i'm getting older, but i simply don't understand how the summer has evaporated the way it has.

commercials on tv about alpaca farming - it is my calling. forget the corporate gig, i'm gonna make me an alpaca farm. send all sweater/sock/toque orders to

Thursday, August 16, 2007

baby blogs

what is the deal with baby blogs...i don't get it. have a child, can't let go of the inter-web, must post pictures...must announce to the world that the 2 year old has finally had an independant bowel movement. holy christ, someone bust out the pyrotechnics. it's so far from party worthy that i'm tempted to reference the bowel movement again. diaper.

your child is your own and the blogosphere is not that village.

organized sports and fucking mobility

organized sports are good things to bring mothers to, they like seeing you run and be sweaty, be part of something friendly. i'm on hold with sony ericsson customer service because it's my last ditch hope of getting a k790a. i loved that phone so goddamn much that i cried when i filed the police report: it was stolen. along with my bank card, driver's license, the prada purse my russian boyfriend's mother gave me for no occaision in particular. all of it gone. the prada purse can't be replaced (by me, at this time, anyway) and was really of little use, unless you consider the pedigree.

fuck pedigree, i'm not a fido commercial (i'm a sony ericsson commercial). i drink beer out of bottles, smoke cigarettes that were half-smoked yesterday and sleep in nightgowns. i ain't got pedigree. but god-willing i'll be a pedigree-less-middle-class-white-girl(woman-on-a-good-day)-university-drop-out with a sony ericsson k790a, which i swear, will be in a museum someday. it's that nice. i'm still on hold.

back to organized sports.

dating is an organized sport, i think. it's pretty organized and sportful...wait...not on hold anymore!

sony ericsson customer service says "buy it off our website or from you provider, those are your options." it's like the parent that offers "stand in the corner or clean your room. we're giving you options...lots of them, the choice is yours."

it's $400 on the website and much more from my loathesome provider. i don't want to stand in the corner.

i'm not a sony ericsson commercial, i'm a samsung 420shit commercial.

fucking mobility.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

haiku for BR

paint and wet snowflakes
pink smiles, unrequited stuff
summer sweatiness

plastic fingernails
keep others skin cells so close
that you can smell them

inboxes fill quick
outboxes fill quicker still
then you stop, say no

new undergarments
make you dream of sex and rings
still you sleep single

cigarettes and beer
are reminiscent of him
what do you do now?

Monday, August 06, 2007

monday august sixth otseven

the man at the brulerie st-denis explained to me this morning that an americano is an americano in french and in english. americanos are bilingual.

had my first canadian hostel experience last night and the coffee was required. some poor soul who'd taken a bus all the way from vancouver (life is too short) stumbled into the women's "dormitory" at 815 this morning and woke me from my restless sleep. there had been thunder and lightning and i dreamt about all the terrible things that happen to women in hostels, until the poor soul stumbled through the door and brought light and noise with her. i didn't dream or sleep after that.

montreal is depressing on mondays when it rains. the streets are mostly empty and those left on them aren't smiling.

the berri-uqam metro smelled like pizza when i dragged my ass through it at 11, looking for a locker to stash my bags.

i bought a brass padlock in a dollar store from a man who spoke neither english nor french, but whose skin was the colour of coffee.

the security guards at the bibliotheque et archives nationales were very gentle with me and directed me to lockers.

there are no flights out of this city today


tu me manques.