Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Remember that So You Think You Can Dance Interview?

This is probably the expression on his face after I was through with him
Good and bad news on that... the good news is that I did it. I actually interviewed one of the castmembers from my favourite dance show. One of my favourite dancers too... Emilio Dosal.

Bad news? It was a telephone interview. That one was a blow. I really thought I was going to get to go backstage especially since the top 10 would be in Ottawa just a few days later. Ah well. As I say to the kids: "You get what you get and you don't get upset." Plus I made such a hash of this that meeting him in person would have been humiliating.

I won't be any competition for Barbara Walters. I tried hard to not gush and talk about myself, but my god, that's not the way I am. I'm so used to a conversation being a give and take (and mostly I give till it hurts) so this was hard for me. Here are some of the interview highlights (I'm so glad I can still take notes on the fly... wahoo public education). I'll comment on my asinine interview techniques in brackets...

Me: Greetings from the Great White North.(the idiocy begins) Have you ever been to Canada?

Emilio: I have. I've been to Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.

Me: Fabulous. I'm from Montreal myself and now I live in Ottawa (See how I already brought that back to me? I'm so awful at this and it gets worse)

Emilio: Oh. Nice. (See? He doesn't care. God help me)

Me (Here's when I started to realize that this interview is going to be a shit show so I made a conscious decision to be upfront about how it was going to go. Which was badly): I don't know where they got the information for me to do this interview but I'm just a mum and a big fan of the show. My blog literally gets less that 30 hits a day. So just let me get all my gushing out before I ask you any real questions. (Here I bizarrely started taking huge breaths as if I was in labour. God, I wish with all my heart that we had gotten cut off at this point.)

Emilio: Okay perfect... no worries (poor guy)

Me: So fingers crossed the show is picked up for another season, would you like to come back as an all-star or a choreographer? (hey look... a lucid question!)

Emilio: Of course, I'd want to be either one of those but I'd definitely want to be an all-star since the choreographer jobs are harder to get to.

Me: Are you still in I.aM.mE? (this is a dance crew with some other dancers we've seen on previous seasons)

Emilio: There's one girl Jaja that auditioned with me...

Me: (Interrupting rudely): SHE WAS AMAZING! (ohmygod, I'm an idiot)

Emilio: (ever gracious): Yeah... anyway I was talking to her and we're getting her papers in order... it was tough that she didn't make it but it's a good setup for next season if they have it. She's been taking classes and working out and when I see that I just assume she's getting prepared for season 12.

Me: I'll be rooting for her if she makes it. Now, I know that when I hear a song on the radio that you have used on the show, it brings me right back to the performance that I saw. In fact, I have a playlist on my iPod called SYTYCD (shit, I was doing it again). I was wondering, is there a song that you hear that you'll never forget the choreography that you learned?

Emilio: Ah, man... that is actually a good question. (YES!!!). There are so many choreographies that I've done and I can't really remember them all but... it's a really random song from when I took a class in 2010 and I danced to a song called Oscar The Grouch. I definitely remember that choreo and that was 4 years ago and I'd been only dancing for 2 years.

Me: I can't believe you've only been dancing for since 2008. You have a gift.

Emilio: I was surrounded by really good people who were willing to help me.

Me: Your family must have been a really good support as well. (Look at being all professional... finally)

Emilio: At first dance was just a hobby but when it became serious and I dropped out they still supported me. They didn't want me to have regrets so that made it easier to make the hard decisions like dropping out of college.

Me: That's really good to hear. (Now here's where I go off the rails again). I myself have an 18 year old son and he's driving me nuts. He doesn't know what he wants to do with his life. I wish he had a passion like dance is for you. I'd do anything if he'd show interest in something other than gaming. But that's my issue. (No kidding. Seriously? THIS is the time to bring up your frustration with your kid? UGH!!)

Emilio: Oh that's fine (He was so great to indulge me and not hang up on me). Eighteen is a tender age. He'll figure it out.

Me (regathering my dignity senses): That's so good to hear. Thank you for the support. Okay... If you hadn't found dance, what would you be doing? Are you a geek about anything? Sci-fi? LARPing? (Again, I'm an idiot... there are 2 questions here and they are completely different. Ugh.)

Emilio: I'm a nerd actually. I majored in mathematics in College. If I didn't follow my passion for dance, I would have continued in my major. But I left 18 months in with 18 left to go. That's definitely the career path I would have chosen.

Me: Do you have time to watch tv? What do you like?

Emilio: Oh yeah... I watch The Walking Dead.It's a great show. It's perfect.

Me: I imagine you get asked the same questions all the time. So here's something else not dance related: Do you like junk food? Sweet? Salty? Both? (Really? This question? Over any others? Double ugh.)

Emilio: Always sweet or sour candies. My friends know to get me candy over presents.

Me: There are lots of Canadian candy that you don't get in the States. Coffee Crisp is one. It doesn't taste like coffee...

Emilio: I know this one! When I went to Vancouver, one of my friends told me to get one and it was amazing.It's great!

Me (I started out bad, got better but then I started to have a full-on psychotic break.): I'd love to bring you all some Canadian chocolate backstage. (I'm as subtle as a kick in the head about my desire for back stage passes. Not forthcoming)

Emilio: (clearly afraid, poor guy). I'd love that!

Me: I have 2 last questions and you choose what's first. The question about earworms or greeting cards? (Like I said. Full-on psychotic break.)

Emilio: Uhhh... earworms (Poor guy.)

Me: How do you get rid of an earworm? What's your best technique?

Emilio: Um. maybe the greeting cards. I've never had an earworm.

Me (doubtful): Do you know what it is? It's just when you get a song stuck in your head. I thought it was more widely known but maybe it's just a Canadian term. (I'm not sure about that one).

Emilio: When that happens to me I just literally tell myself to shut up. I'll just say "stop it" and "shut up" until it goes away.

Me: Okay, last question... when you get a greeting card, how long do you keep it for? (Oh my god.)

Emilio: Depends on the card and who it comes from. There are cards I've had around for almost 3 years. Otherwise, if it's just a get well card or something, it's just a few weeks.

Me: I have a mental problem (this is not new information and has become clearer in the 10 minutes of this interview). I will keep cards forever especially if something nice is written inside.

Emilio: That makes sense.

Me: It was so nice talking to you. (mewling now) I'm such a fan. I sat at the computer and bought the tickets for the show within minutes of them going on sale so I have 8th row seats. My daughter and I were high-fiving each other and whooping all over the living room. (Here's where I wish the earth had swallowed me up.) Do you know where you'll be staying so maybe I can get you the chocolate? Or is that weird?

Emilio (poor guy): I don't think we're staying anywhere. We'll be at the venue the whole day. (I'm such an idiot. How many times can I call myself an idiot in one post? I'm so not cut out for this interview shit)

Me: Well maybe I can find a way to sneak a basket in to you guys. (oh my god, give it up you colossal idiot). Because really you have to try some of the stuff we have. Maple candies... you haven't lived.

Emilio (laughing nervously): We'll see what we can do (poor guy) 

Me: Well thank you so much for taking time out to talk to me and for making an old lady's day

Emilio: No worries... thank you for the interview

Me: Take care


And there you have it. My blog post/interview of shame. Be gentle with me.


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Went to the Cenotaph on the weekend

Cpl Nathan Cirillo's funeral was today.  I couldn't watch this afternoon, but over the weekend I had the opportunity to go to the Cenotaph where he was gunned down last week. It was very moving as the square was full of people, but no one spoke over hushed whispers. People put their heads on each other's shoulders, hugged or held hands for comfort and just shared their positive energy at the place where so much bad energy was expended.

I took a few photos but felt almost disrespectful in a way. Would I want people to take pictures in a place where my loved one died? Then again, it is the national monument to remember the Unknown Soldier and it's a place to reflect so why not have a photo of such a place? At least I wasn't like the woman who was trying to get a shot of her sons with the monument in the background. She was yelling instructions at them as if they were in front of the big ball at Epcot... "Get closer together! Smile! Move to the right more!" Tacky.


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

What is happening?

I always feel safe here in Ottawa. But this afternoon a gunman killed a soldier then ran down the street and stormed our Parliament before getting killed himself. This is Canada. This just doesn't happen here.

Parliament Hill has always been open to the public. We as citizens can just walk in and wander those beautiful halls. It's what we are known for... an extension of that lovely and famous politeness we often get teased for, but are fiercely proud of. For that we are being punished. We may lose that openness because of this terrible act of violence. It sucks. There were so many chilling pictures. The paramedics working on the soldier where he fell... armed security running up the Parliament lawn toward the Centre Block... Parliamentarians piling up chairs in front of a door to barricade it... the shots ringing out sounding like a freaking Wild West shootout... It doesn't seem real.

Schools and businesses were (and some still are) on lockdown and we just wait. I love this city and country and when I woke up this morning I felt proud as I always do, to have been born in such an awesome country. I'm worried to see what I'll wake up to tomorrow morning. Will we be surrounded by armed guards? Will my kids have to walk through metal detectors at school? That isn't us, but I think we may be naive if we think that everything will get back to normal after this awful day. And that makes me sad.


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Blog post prompt...

Today's prompt is:

"What question do you hate to be asked? Explain."

I love to talk about myself. You know that and this whole blog proves it. I'm my own favourite subject. Not news.

What I hate is when I get asked where I'm from. On the surface it's an innocent question. But from the right (wrong) person, it becomes a loaded question full of assumptions. Yuck.

Picture it. Sicily 1945... Wait. I'm channelling Sophia Petrillo...

Picture it (and it happens like this all the time)... a cute little old lady strikes up a conversation with me. We are talking hair and food and shopping or something mundane. Then it comes:

Cute Little Old Lady: So where are you from?
Me: (knowing what she means but purposely being obtuse): Montreal.
CLOL: No, I mean where are your people from?

Look. Does it really matter? We've just had a nice conversation. Who cares if I'm Canadian, West Indian or Klingon? Why is this an important question? Will I be judged if answer "wrong"? What is the deal here?

I hate that question. I will always hate that question. Because it makes me feel like just being my sparkly wonderful self isn't enough for you. And it should be. I mean, really.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Photo Dump...

This was taken pretty close to 2:01. A swarm of them flew through the neighbourhood and the kids had a blast catching them. And quick aside... this is a red one. I took the photo because I realised when I saw it that I only see orange ones nowadays.

Thanksgiving dinner! There's nothing better than a cook-from-frozen turkey. Yes, it takes 3 hours longer but who cares when after 8 hours you get this...

Yummy, roasted juicy beast!

Rollin' with my homie. Okay, it was more of a visit with my elderly Auntie B. She came from Montreal to spend Thanksgiving with us.

Road trip! Going to pick her up.

The inside of my niece's Porsche. I'm not jealous...

A leaf. Nothing to say about it. It was just a red leaf in a yard full of yellow ones. 

That's it for the week. I'm going to try to write more in the coming weeks. It's just a matter of getting Henry off the computer before primetime when I don't want to do anything but lump out...


Wednesday, October 8, 2014

This is amazing.

Really. I have no words to describe the amazingness of this. And you know me. I rarely lack the capability to speak. But get this..


Oh my goodness, I don't even know where to start. I'll just copy part of the email I got this afternoon:


Hope you’re well!

So You Think You Can Dance, the 13-time Primetime Emmy® Award-winning show that sparked America’s fascination with dance, is set to captivate audiences iOttawa, ON as they make their stop on the live, nationwide 2014 So You Think You Can Dance Tour. We would love for you to share this news with your readers, and would like to offer you the opportunity to interview Season 11’s Top 10 finalists in advance of this show.

***Did you read that like I did? Interview the top 10 finalists? I may die.***
The Season 11 tour lineup includes the following Top 10 finalists: Ricky UbedaValerie RockeyJessica RichensZack EverhartCasey AskewJacque LeWarne,Rudy AbreuTanisha BelnapBridget Whitman, and Emilio Dosal.
Either way, p​lease let me know if you’d be interested in sharing this news with your readers, and/or an interview with Season 11 Top 10 finalists. I look forward to hearing from you.

***"If I'd be interested"? IF??***

Thanks so much!


I got this email for signing up for something somewhere as a blogger. I've been offered tickets to fashion shows and store openings but never have I ever been given the opportunity to interview anyone I admire as much as these dancers. 

Audrey and I bought our tickets for this show (8th row thankyouverymuch) minutes after they went on sale, and we have been fans of this show since season 2 (season 1 wasn't broadcast in Canada). I can't believe I have this chance. 

Now all I have to do is make sure I'm not gushing and starstruck asking the same old questions. I can just see myself giggling and flop-sweating, asking them something dumb like "have you ever farted in the middle of a routine?" UGH.

Do you watch this show? What intelligent questions do you think I should ask?


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Photo Dump!

A leaf I found today. Kinda boring but it was nearly 2:01...

Back story: we caught this little guy at my school and I wanted to release him at a nearby park. I took this photo just before a seagull swooped down and nearly took him. I chased the bird away, scooped him up in the Tupperware I brought him in and put him in a rocky area where he could hide and stay out of trouble. What a pain. But looka dat face... 

There he is eating an apple after we caught him.

Audrey got most of her braces off. Just the top teeth. It would have been all but I messed up the appointment time and she showed up an hour late. I still haven't stopped apologizing. It'll be another 2 weeks before she can bite into an apple like she'd been looking forward to. I'll never live that one down...

My dragonboat coach gets an phone upgrade thanks to our end of the year gift. I think he was the only person under 30 to still be using a flip phone.

My 1950's Housewife Storm costume is nearly complete

I can always find the TARDIS at any con.

The Moment and the Ironside... it's a Doctor Who thing. nevermind...

Wedding dress shopping with my bestie... she made me swear not to publish any photos but I'm sure she'd be fine with this. Those shoes are to die for aren't they?

These pictures sure make me look like I have a life, don't they?


Thursday, October 2, 2014

My first CD

The 30th anniversary of the compact disc was yesterday and it made me wonder what my first CD was. That was a head scratcher. I can quickly remember my first record. The first one ever was a 45 of "Good Times" by Chic. I won it in a draw at my grade 6 grad (oh god, I'm old). The first LP I ever bought with my own money was Glass Houses by Billy Joel. Yes, I'm aware.

I was buying tapes concurrently with LPs (for my Walkman, you know) so I can't remember my first one of those but I do remember buying Green Day's Dookie tape (hee... that sounds like a K-Tel product) when it first came out because I was working at a record store at the time and I could get my grubby little hands on all kinds of excellent music before anyone else.

Anyway, back to my first CD. I don't remember which one I bought but I remember which one I got. It was On The Track by Leon Redbone. It was a gift from my nephew Jeremy. I loved the fact that it had Michigan J. Frog as cover art, but what I didn't love was the fact that I didn't own CD player at the time. And didn't for almost a year after. I'm a classic late adopter especially after the betamax and the laserdisc player incidents of my youth. Boy, was my dad errr... vocal about those purchases. Back to old Leon. When I finally played that CD, I found it so weird and folky and indescribably cool. Listen...

And that's my musical history. I love everything from classical to country, from disco to Bollywood. What do you like to listen to now and what was your first CD?