Monday, October 31, 2005

Now A Zombie

Only those who dare read this may, but you must be viciously attentive to every detail and you cannot have a weak stomach. Do not question the sound of creaking in your nightmares or raise a hand against persistent spirits. Do not hide from that moment, when your skin begins to crawl, waiting like some parasite, in a festering feeding ground. Do not twitch when there is a hand reaching up for you from under the gutters, where madness and envy dance together like depraved lovers. Because then you will see it, you will meet their gaze, and the screams will be nothing but the sound of the truth ringing in your senseless ears. Your union will be solidified once it touches you. I am speaking to you through a barren hollow from the depth of all lost souls. The air that I gasp outlasts life, so I suppose you could say, my words are an epilogue.

This weekend was so casual it was deadly. My eyes rattled in my skull and I let my legs buckle to devilish music. I stayed around the homestead instead of meeting up with my new family. The relatives understood. Zombies are too dumb to protest. We have zombie communication. Deep moans can be carried across long distances. When you aren't sentient, all your reactions are mere mechanizations of the flesh anyway. So for the time spent locally, it was full of ghastly Halloween delights. I had horrible fun.

I got together with Homer Simpson and Big Poppa, some things and a dinner table set for two. If I were still mortal, it would have tired me out relentlessly, but I died last week, and besides losing several chunks of skin, I still have most of my limbs and corpse intact. (Big Poppa staple-gunned my left arm back on)

Let me tell you so far about death so far compared to life. Death came to me like an answer to so many questions. No more struggling to survive. It is easier to drag others down and feast unreservedly like the necromancer I am. The world owes me for consuming my life, so I started with a few small cats and moved my way up to children. They were naughty children, who I caught in the midst of committing arson, so I rectified them and had a snack. However, I prefer the reeking wretched taste of women that work in fragrance departments. No additional seasonings needed. If they don't seem delectible, I pour gasoline on them and serve them to myself as a flamb�.

Life was nice, but so innocent. They say that life is wasted on the living, and now that I'm dead just from one silly accident, I would say so too. Still, there were the simple joys of seeing dew on flowers in the spring, or being able to stay out late look out from the CN tower, or have the convenience of going in to get a coffee at some caf� and seeing some beautiful blond to exchange smiles with or walking into a church and catch everyone sitting quietly that made it all seem worth it. Perhaps someone would randomnly leave a note on your desk that told you that you were important to them, or you solved some problem for someone who had been scratching their head for weeks trying to figure out. Those things made life seem worth it.

Here it is grey now. There is a electricity and danger in the air, which is looming. Because it is the night of the celtic calendar when spiritual activity is said to be strong, I feel a call from my fellow zombies. There are many places in my hometown that are said to be haunted, and I will try to find them. The Joseph Schneider house is apparently haunted by a woman who is seen in the upstair mirror holding a pair of scissors. She is known as the Phantom Seamstress. I would like to meet her and ask her if she'd care for a walk.

Maybe I can learn more about this new state of being undead.
 Posted by Picasa

Big Poppa's lovin' it Posted by Picasa

Homer after a few Duffs Posted by Picasa

thing 1 and corpse bride Posted by Picasa

Waiting on the Outskirts of Pulsation

'A times, there are moments of consciousness, and this makes me a pensive zombie. It is when I see little things, like how all the lights in the intersection are covered over with black garbage bags. They remind me of coffins. There are signs on vacant cash registers that say "the next cashier will be only too pleased to help you." I walk down the streets that have been abandonned, and know for example, that the message may be a lie, for the next cashier may never come back, and few are willing or able to help others when they are faced with extreme circumstances. I notice little things as a zombie that others are too busy to notice, like how the buildings age or the light in the air becomes tinted. Have you ever noticed that the handle of your car keys are rubber, to insulate you against getting a shock when you touch your car? Sometimes it's hard to remember that things can shock you, when you are so immersed in a comfortable routine. It sometimes takes an axe to strike you dead before you liven up.  Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 27, 2005

It's HNT, and I'm Starting to Zombify

I wonder what will happen to me by Monday.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Look Inside, and Tell me what it is that you See?

I see sadness, despair, populations of painful perceptions buried in time. Your corneas close in on a fine point, making it quiver. There is evidence of your presence in those changing rivulets in your eyes, the glistening pupils, [she is somewhere, back there] those two quaint windows, opening out from your mind, and gently processing, with all their hidden knowledge.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Indulging Demons and Getting Work Done

This is my week this week. As you can see, it's full. I get to have a breakfast interview and create a recognition program for Weyerhaeuser (as an exercise) and do promotions and travel. I get to start two new jobs and hold on to two more, but it's exhilarating. Although I'm sleep-deprived after cramming for my World Affairs midterm this morning, which I smoked, I feel like I'm getting through and seeing a clear goal. The alternative would be mindlessly going through the week as a zombie, pouring hot coffee on my hand, watching my self-market crash, etc. Thankfully, my phone bill is due one day after I get paid.

But the highlight will be seeing so many different costumes and maintaining order as a security guard at the school Halloween bash, then getting to be chaotic myself, becoming a zombie and meeting with others like myself at Mitzee's zombie convention (who must have had her blog assassinated again). You can't kill me, I'll just come back again. CBC is talking about the origination of zombies in Haiti. How natural drugs were induced to make people appear dead. Later, the zombies would rise out of the grave, but they were thought to have lost their souls. I'm working on my zombie groan so that I can scare the wits out of someone. uuuuuuuuUUUUAAAAAAAAAAAAHHhh!!

Tomorrow I meet with my conversation partner to practice english, who comes from Korea. She gave me green tea, which apparently has many health benefits, including detoxification and weight loss. We talk about Canadian culture, she shows me pictures of Korea, and we joke around. In training for conversation partnering, there were some interesting things we realized about our own language, like the fact that it's a messed-up language with strange rules. For example, our verbs and nouns don't seem to match. Why don't you say "he walk" and "they walks"? We dissected the components of conversations: questions, responses, rhetorical questions and expressions, and compared expressions that have meaning only in particular contexts and languages.

For example, Indonesians have a saying: "The stronger the handshake, the emptier the mind!" If we would take that to heart in PR, perhaps we'd shake hands like they were dead fish. Speaking of fish, the Japanese say "only dead fish have their mouths open." Luckily, I'm designed to be a nose-breather (except when the cold strikes). I like this Dutch saying: "A good wine doesn't need to brag." because it reminds me to be modest, and not to listen when the wine starts talking. The contested communication difference between East Indians is that apparently they don't say "no". When they want to say "no" they say "yes" and when they want to say maybe they say "yes yes" and when they want to say "yes" they say "yes yes yes!" very passionately. I suppose that in some cultures, no means yes, but I haven't found an example for that yet.

Yes, it is glorious to be young and busy. I think I will look for a nice vampire this weekend to keep me that way forever. Where are you Lestat? Where are you Louis? Claudia? Come to me my children!  Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 23, 2005

When Everything is a Smear: What Goes Through your Head, Come Sunday Morning?

I did my training as a food sampler yesterday, which was quite low-key. It will get a lot more hectic this week when I start my other two jobs as a security guard and a wireless phone package salesman. An older woman took me for a tour of the grocery store, in the freezers, in the storage rooms, showed me where the appliances were, and pointed out the faults of the other sampler: "She puts her spoons in her sample cups. That's a big no no. Someone will come along and make a mess of it all!" I wasn't very nervous and I didn't need to be. I just tried to ask questions so that I'd have things together for when I did it on my own. My trainer was an award-winning salesperson, but she had trouble remembering what it was we were about to do. She had difficulty finding the right carton of orange juice on the shelf, so my hawk eyes helped out.

I felt more capable and less senile than usual, dealing with someone who's daughter was old enough to be working in the make-up department. My trainer said just be friendly to the people and make them laugh. She even told me a personal story about a customer who was trying to hit on her and ask her name, at which point she told him she was Jane, just like the name of the woman who's pancakes were being sampled. After the two hours of training were up, she shook my hand and wished me the best of luck. Then I drove to Guelph.

Odd and I jammed, working on my most disturbing song. I taught him to do the bass-line that goes along with my guitar part, or rather, complimenting it. It's not polka music, but when I play the "oom's" Odd would play that "pa's" on the off-beat like "Oom-pa! Oom-pa! Ooom-pa! Oom-pa!" (You see what I mean.) It sounds really good. It will sound even better when I add the vocals. As the afternoon progressed, we started just fooling around and experimenting, going off on certain themes and turning our amps and reverb up high to fill the room with sound. Paul would come out for a cigarette in between songs for a break from painting. Yusuf was at a funeral.

At night, Odd had had too much to drink and he started cutting everyone up. He was out of control and everyone knew he wasn't talking sense. He was too generous in offering to fight everyone. We would simply have to tell him "No thanks. Dude, just chill out." The situation was at it's pinnacle when he knocked over his drink, then fumed at Rick for using a towel to mop it up, screaming: "how would you like it if someone used your towel, you idiot!?" This went on past the point of incredulity until Sarah went to her room and got her towel, started mopping and said "This is how I would feel if someone were to use my towel." It made me sad to think that my friends who could be such good people and such good musicians sometimes were turned into such sour people with the addition of a little alcohol. One of my friends was mourning the loss of his dead friend while another made us squander our time fighting over spilled gin.

When we all cooled our nerves and came back together, we went to a hypocrite masquerade party, where people were supposed to wear a mask of someone or something that they weren't. I know several people were thinking of printing a picture of their ex's off and going as them, but no one did. Hardly anyone had a mask, except a few who had feathery masks, or socks with holes in them tied around their eyes. In a way, it was fitting to try to use our own faces to represent hypocrisy.

I felt alone there and anti-social. I couldn't talk to anyone or engage a conversation. They just didn't seem to catch. I was delighted when a very attractive girl came up to me and put a brush in my hand and asked me "Do you feel like painting?" So she took me into a separate room where there was a large canvas and some paint, and we got to work. Others joined in, putting their fingers right in the paint and smearing it on the canvas, rubbing combinations of colour together. At one point my host and I became a little playful after having accidently encroached on eachother's artistic space. I reached out and dabbed a bit of red on her finger then she put a glob on the back of my hand.

I wanted to talk to a friend of mine that I hadn't really talked to for awhile, because so much is going on. She is a wonderful girl with a very cool attitude and a rustic physique as a result of her training for years as an acrobat. She skateboards and breaks fingers and bounces back from it as if it were nothing, but she's also sensitive inside. I could tell she was hurt in some way, so I asked her. She said "yes" but didn't say what, then I reminded myself. It's a delicate situation because she's such a sweetheart. Everyone loves her. She's very close and has been very close with another friend of mine who met her through his ex boyfriend. Since him and his boyfriend aren't together any more, it's different, because she was always the third wheel. Now I know that she likes him. He's single now, but he's gay. Things have happened to escalate the situation that could never be, and so I think she realizes that and feels guilty for liking someone she cannot have. He feels helpless because he likes her too, but not quite like that.

I woke up this morning and felt like I couldn't arrange all the pieces of my life and the lives of my friends. There are just too many pieces. Seeing any of them was confusion, so I laid back and let myself dream some more. Then, barely able to coerce myself into the shower, my mind turned to the errands and things that I needed to do today, feeling overwhelmed and apathetic at the same time. I wanted to feel less dispassionate, then I found something that made everything else real again and made me feel a little better: a smear of paint on my hand.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Machiavellian Quiz

You Are Somewhat Machiavellian

You're not going to mow over everyone to get ahead...
But you're also powerful enough to make things happen for yourself.
You understand how the world works, even when it's an ugly place.
You just don't get ugly yourself - unless you have to!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Bandwatch: Metric's Glass Ceiling

I love metric. If my admiration for Metric had a glass ceiling, I would have already broken through it. I've been cranking up the volume and listening to them in the car for weeks on end. (The tune Handshakes comes to mind: "buy this car to drive to work, drive to work to pay for this car"). The new album "Live it Out" just keeps growing on me. It had a lot to live up to in my mind, after "Old World Underground" considering that the metric rhythums and clever lyrics of the first album kept me attentive for over two years.

"Live it out" is characteristic of metric, with it's soft, vibrating keyboard melodies interspersed with metronomic lead guitar parts and crunchy rock effects. But where "Old World Underground" was reminiscent of a punk scene that died, "Live it Out" was, as the title suggests, more settled in, to the point where it had more freedom to make fun of the ironies of life and those who kill themselves living it.

They've matured to be even more scathing in their mockery and subtle attacks against the mentality of mindless automatons and all-round jerks, re-addressing the war that won out despite many a protest, and the double standards and hypocrisy, and the harassment of players wanting a Poster Girl to take home at the end of an evening. (Good pronunciation of the French there girl!) It is always interesting to try to gauge Emily Haines' tone of voice. Is she sincere? Sarcastic? Ambivalent? Either way, I wouldn't want to be in a verbal spat with her. This is especially true when we encounter songs charged with resentment, dealing in harsh criticism passive-aggressively. Examples include the masochistic tendencies in Torture Me, and the malicious invitation that she extends in Too Little Too Late, where she says "you can take a live wire into the bath with you"

I've seen them twice in the last few months: once on Toronto Island, and once in Guelph, where I was close enough to see the blue sparkle in Emily Haines eyes, as she looked out past the audience, with her deep, impenetrible stare. Once I thought I felt the rustle from her flipping her hair during Empty: "shake your head it's empty, shake your hips move your feet..." This allowed me to hear most of the new songs before I bought the album, which came out in late September. Let me tell you: I was anxious for some more Metric.

Now they are touring in the USA, where they have a growing entourage of loyal fans. I look forward to having them back, once they return to one of the original hometowns, Toronto.

Now I just thought I'd give a sample of one of my favorite songs,
Glass Ceiling:

Only know what I'm told, only know what I'm told
Fast asleep daydreaming
Start to push, break your own glass ceiling
Can't count, can't catch the pieces falling

Who let it end up on the ground
How am I gonna know you're letting me down
How did I end up on the ground

Only do what I'm told, only do what I'm told
Last to leave cold calling
You're gonna lose your arms, amputate plasticine
There's no knight in silver armor shining

Who let it end up on the ground
How am I gonna know I'm letting you down
Who let it end up on the ground
How did he end up on the ground
Face down on the ground

Only go what I'm told, only know what I'm told
Inch to inches crowding
We can't leave, it's the last road open
Every speed on our knees is crawling

HNT will Knock your Socks OFF!!!

...and have you going around scantily clad Posted by Picasa

Monday, October 17, 2005

Fun Game

Quick! Try this before Google fixes their glitch, or ah, rather, their accuracy.
2/type "failure" (without the quotation marks)
3/click the 'I'm feeling lucky button'

What do you get?

A prime example of failure.

Announcement Re: Pot Philosophy

Sunday, October 16, 2005

grrrr Posted by Picasa

Loss of Arm Function

I did too many preacher curls on Friday, and now I'm still feeling it, evidence that my arms aren't used to weights the way they were during my jackhammer days. I woke up with intense pain in my biceps, and throughout my body in general. I can't extend my arms out because I suppose my tendons have shrunk. This makes me look rather silly, walking around with my arms dangling down only partially, and with my elbows permanently bent. I hope they go back to normal.

I can't say the pain doesn't feel good though. I love to knead out the tenseness, squeezing my one arm with the other, and give myself little jabs in the pecs with my finger tips. "No pain no gain" is not necessarily my mantra, ever since the time I repetitively bashed my head against the wall for an hour and discovered I had no more ideas than when I started, but I'm hoping to get back in shape, now that I spend lots of time in front of the computer, and the cold season threatens to keep me indoors.

We have a free pass to the recreation centre as part of our tuition, and I intend to use it. I go on the treadmill, pull myself up on the chin-up bar, do leg raises, bench-presses, sit-ups and raise the free weighs over my head. The best part is the cold shower at the end of it all. Working out makes you more aware of your body, and tends to improve posture. It also has a positive psychological effect, resulting in more oxegen to the brain, and a natural high. Just make sure you don't overdo it. AND REMEMBER TO STRETCH!!!

Friday, October 14, 2005

Pot Philosophy

In my specialized writing class, we have an assignment involving combining our efforts with a design student to come up with a campaign to address Canada's problem with people smoking marijuana and driving.

We've been brainstorming ideas like creating a poster with a baby-sized casket showing the father crying over it that insinuates that were someone not to have smoked and driven, they would still be alive. We thought of usuing Alan Sidorov, a race car driver, as a celebrity endorsement. He has smoked pot, but he abandoned it and says: "What we a roadside test for drug use. Just as drinking and driving used to be a subject for jokes, people who smoke pot and drive don't seem to realize what a risk they are taking." I even wrote a sensational story, but we're going to scrap it and work on something else.

Many people don't take the issue seriously, or at least they don't consider pot to be as much of a danger as drinking and driving. When my parents were growing up, drinking and driving didn't seem like a big deal, but then the statistics started to tell a new story, and MADD cropped up, and now we know that it IS serious.

There are stronger deterrents against drinking and driving than smoking and driving, because you can blow over on the breathilizer and lose your license, but with pot, the common impression is that there is no way to get caught, so people think they can get away with it, and many do.

To a certain degree, it's true. If you smoke up and drive, the most police will do when you're pulled over is sniff for smells of the wacky tabacky, then they'll give you all the tests that they usually do for drinking: "stand on your right foot and touch your nose with the end of your finger...walk this line, putting one foot in front of the other" but these tests are ineffective. They don't really have a good system for testing whether someone is high because your eyes may be bloodshot, or you may seem a little dopey, but who's to say you're getting enough sleep or you don't have allergies?

High-riding aside, my friend Mary sent me this interesting article, which throws many of the common stereotypes of pot-smokers out the window. People are always saying pot will make you demotivated. Pot will make you dumb. Pot will make you depressed. It will make you antisocial etc. and politically it's advantageous to show marijuana in a negative light. This study shows some surprising results to the contrary. One of the reasons Canada doesn't legalize it is because our neighbours to the south would probably invade us. If pot were legal and taxable in this country, we could afford to get rid of GST and PST. We forget that marijuana has been used for thousands of years for medicinal and ritual purposes, and the side-effects are much less severe than alcohol. Sure, it is a lot higher in the concentration of THC these days, but so was the substance scientists used on rats.

So, now the question is: does dope make you a dupe or does the bud make you wiser?

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Maple Leaf

You were just a bud in that lonely spring, clinging to the branches like a zebra muscle. As the days progressed, I sweat, and you flexed your herbaceous fingers. Outward, onward, upward you went, smart little thing you are, blowing carelessly in the breeze. Then the temperature fell, and life was not so accomodating for you anymore. I forgot that you even existed. Maybe I took you for granted, in amongst so many of your own kind.

Yesterday, I found you lying on the ground, dead.

But you looked so pretty.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Apocalypse in Coming

Devilish durveshes, dungeons and dragons,
music in orbit and pastors and pagans,
all through the earth hidden; all spread about,
The world gives a heave, its wide mouth doth shout,
with changes both subtle and quivering past,
how will cement shacks stacked up so high last?

Watch as our children lengthen by day.
Watch as the sun's smile fades away.
Mark how the time passes spiralling on.
Look at the new moon, piercing the dawn.

People with big plans,
Pensions from rich lands,
Power from large damns,
"economic stimulation"

Angels and dreamgods lure us with visions,
Butchered in time-space, cut in divisions,
Segmented classes, decadent asses,
Feeding the pigs in the sky.

With raging and greed and the blood hunger thick,
Destruction, a habit, we surely must kick,
At some point, replace in our living some sense,
Collectively we want to turn out less dense.

Sort out the clashes,
Face forward sashes!
Fashion to seduce the best of bad men.

It could be a folly,
or oh my Lord golly,
but someone must always take up this torch.

For territory, healthcare and welfare and tax,
no one will listen if our policies lack,
Appropriate means for the free individual,
Free from everything but the residual.

Traces of history, stick on our shores,
in an expression, in peoples mores,
The last thing the free-thinking mind wants to think,
is that our lives right here make elsewhere a stink.

As pale fingers pry open envelopes, some mystery waits to be hatched.

@Copyright 2005 SirBarrett

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

you might be down, but you're not out Posted by Picasa

Being Broke(n)

After a weekend of plenty, a lifetime of indulgence and recklessness, I discover I'm in poverty. I had the unfortunate opportunity to learn a lesson: a cop caught me speeding and gave me a hefty fine, plus an extra one for not lowering my high beams fast enough. I've added up the bills that I owe, and I'm in trouble.

The best advice I can tell myself is: STAY CALM! but it's hard to get myself to stop pacing and I keep wondering how I'm going to dig myself out of here. On the other hand, I know I will. I have faith. I've applied for jobs and heard back from one, which will keep me employed after my current contract ends. I got hired today! It's tricky going to school and working. I always find myself doing more work than I'm paid for, but I guess them's the hard knocks.

I should be happy considering all the suffering around me, this year especially. I should feel like I fit in, being human and vulnerable like everyone else. I should feel like I belong, knowing that the one thing we all have is suffering, but I feel lonely. I feel overwhelmed by my program, and I've been thinking about someone again lately. The world can be sad, but many have it worse than me.

My friend Kaz, who just got married, has to go back to Japan for 7 months before he can get his VISA to work here, so he'll be separated from his wife. My old housemate's boyfriend was run over by a salt tanker two weeks ago. He was in critical condition but now seems to be stabilizing with a broken leg. My other friend got kicked out of his house after a violent split and has been couch-surfing for weeks while he continues working and looking for a home, and my neighbour, who just last year was a basketball star at his high school with a car and a cute girlfriend, has bone cancer which has moved to his lungs, like Terry Fox's did. His father was hopeful that he would get better, but we know what happened to Terry Fox.

I'm trying to take things one at a time. I've sent off cheques for some of the things I owe, but I have to wait until they take a bite out of my account before I know how much is left, and how to live accordingly. I've thought of trying to get a loan, but debt is not pretty. I've thought of borrowing money, but I have no friends that have it.

On the upside, this has forced me to rethink my entire lifestyle. I like to work hard and play hard, but now I'll have to work harder and not play. Frankly, I play too much and I know this is my fault. This is my chance to get rid of my vices and poor organization. No more binge smoking, trips, or shopping sprees. No operas. No new dress shoes. No new equipment. I must focus all my energies now on being healthy and fit to deal with my situation, but I'm so thankful that I AM relatively healthy and alive. My grandfather always told me (the one that was run over by a tractor who now walks with a cane): "if you aren't healthy, you aren't good to anybody. Take care of yourself, and you can do something!" I've had so many accidents before, it can be surprising. Work and no play might turn me into a very boring boy, but I can't fathom the alternative.

I must stay calm, and begin to repair things.

"Welcome to the realm of consequence" -anonymous

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Wunderbar Wochenende!!

The Bavarian heritage is alive this Oktoberfest weekend in Waterloo. Come out to the Oktoberfest parade on Monday Oct 9 at 8:30am in front of Waterloo town square on King St. You can go to the "Hans Haus", a castle located in downtown Kitchener for information on the events of the week -whether you want to taste some of the various flavours of schnapps, compete in archery or pull out your polka at one of the taverns. This is a nice relaxing weekend of Thanksgiving as well.


Filed under Events

Thursday, October 06, 2005

A Pop Singer with a Sense of Geography

"I get to go to lots of overseas places, like Canada" -Britney Spears

Photo Source

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Hockey Night in Canada

The last time I watched hockey, I sprawled out on the couch with a brew and a girl in the summer of 2004. It was the semi-finals, and the leafs lost. I blamed it on McCabe's sloppy passes. Last year, there was a lock-out, so there was no hockey. I'm not a die-hard fan but I was still disappointed.

Hockey now returns. The first game starts in five minutes.


Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Introductory Speeches and Outros to Look Back on

This is a picture of a rubber ball that lights up when you bounce it.

It's difficult to prioritize what to write about or how to do it, but I will try to make a method of this madness. I'm envious of others for making it seem so easy.

The weekend was fun-filled, and I had a good jam on at the open mic due to a sudden uninhibited vibe and the spontaneous benefit of a guest drummer. I had a bit of sport at my fellow crew-member's residence the Friday before that, playing cards against new challengers, where I was also exposed to some excellent party costumes: people decked out in bathrobes. Had a social breakfast at the Apollo the morning after. Great for eggs and friendly atmosphere!

Last week, both the Career Fair and the concert were a success. I got a little ball with a battery of some kind and a device which lights up and flashes red when you bounce it. It came from Ontario Power Generation. I also talked to IBM, Desire2Learn, a local educational resources business, and learned a bit about government positions.

The weather is like the summer we should have had, which means, NOT blistering hot or humid enough to suffocate babies. I'm enjoying it like a delicious desert to summer excess.

In the meantime, school is inspiring. My courses are giving me lots to look up, in terms of info. We had an exercise in Presentation Skills class where we got to pick a charity and then write and present a short speech to introduce the speaker of your choice for a fundraiser event.

Although my character is entirely fictional, he's roughly based on reality, and I felt like I got to know him as his story unfolded on the page. I'd like to share his experience with you. I'm convinced that were he to exist, he would be a great speaker for this initiative. Habitat for Humanity and the Rockefeller Plaza project are real, and it's likely that someone exists out there who is similar to this character. We know that there are many who need people like him. Despite his nonexistence, I find his story inspiring nonetheless. I suppose sometimes our imaginary friends turn out to be someone you look up to.

Here's a little about him:

I assume that we're all here for the same reason: we believe in humanity. This organization hopes to express that by building homes around the clock, and transforming Rockefeller Plaza into "Humanity Plaza" for the hurricane Katrina victims. The speaker that I'm about to introduce has a lot of experience with being homeless, but he now rebuilds lives, nail by nail.

He grew up in Santa Ana, Salvador, on a coffee plantation. His family was poor, but he recalls a rich childhood, making rafts and swimming in the Coatepeque Lake. As he grew up, soccer was always a big part of his life. Then, in June 1969, when tensions were mounting between Honduras and El Salvador over purported illegal immigrants from El Salvador, war erupted. He remembers his father taking him to a soccer match in San Salvador in June, when riots broke out. By July, the Salvadorian air force was conducting strikes on Honduran soil. El Salvador was becoming overpopulated with returning immigrants, and his home was completely destroyed. They wandered to various camps, looking for food and shelter, but it wasn’t until they found Habitat for Humanity, that they finally had a home again.

Slowly, his family started to get back on their feet. In 1978, when his father fell weak and died, Jorge was the oldest son, so he decided that he should continue doing what was done for him, and he traveled to Africa, where he worked with children and built houses. He then served as a buildertraveledelleBangkokankok, Thailand, where he built houses for the Tsunami victims and orphans.

Because of his generosity and kindness, he has been referred to by many children simply as "papa." It is my pleasure to introduce, Jorge Gonzales.

-The author of this story is not affiliated with Habitat for Humanity on any professional basis, nor is he employed by them. Any simliarities between Jorge Gonzales and any real person/s are completely coincidental.-
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