Friday, June 29, 2007

O (yeah) Canada!

Today I embark on a four-day weekend, probably my favourite mini-holiday of the year: Canada Day weekend. Most Canadians will spend this weekend in backyards, parks and campgrounds - grilling food, drinking beer, and shooting off fireworks in a limb-maiming homemade pyrotech showdown with their neighbours.

Last year I went camping with 75 friends while dressed up as Xena: Warrior Princess. I figure that's gonna be a pretty hard act to follow, so I've decided to stay in the city this year. Today I'm going on a glamour safari with Canadian couture designer Mark Belford. I'm attending a wedding next weekend, so mama needs to look spiffy, and Mark is the finest shopping sherpa a girl could ask for. Our expedition shall conclude with adult refreshments from his fabulous terrace overlooking the stunning urban spawl of Mississauga.

Saturday starts with F1 qualifying at 8am - my favourite way to start the day. This weekend's race is le Grand Prix de France at Magny-Cours, a tough track with brutal hairpins, so cars will probably crash and I will be giddy. Then it's a few pints on a rooftop patio later in the afternoon with an old friend.

Sunday promises to be spectacular - starting with the French Grand Prix race at 7am, some champagne & OJ, and a full-on Canadian breakfast (eggs, maple cured back bacon, hash browns and toast). Then maybe a nap and it's off to my friends' Canada Day BBQ. The hosts are professional foodies, and the authors of Cooking With Booze, so I anticipate very good food with very good friends.

If I'm still standing on Monday, it's Caesarfest with Dave FM, my nomadic mixologist friend, back in town after years of scuba diving his way through Southeast Asia and Japan. For those who are not familiar with the Bloody Caesar, Canada's official cocktail, click here for the history and a recipe. Dave and I used to bartend together at a college pub, and came to perfect our own personal versions of the drink, and you can bet that there as many variations on the recipe as there are taverns. We try to meet every summer for a tour of Toronto's patios and a sampling of various recipes. It's not terribly scientific - after about 5 of them, the canker sores kick in and the subtleties of flavour get lost. I tend to get lost, as well, which is why Dave and I shall be equipped with GPS units this year.

But amid all the fun and frolic, I'd like to take a moment to pay tribute to our Peacekeepers in Afghanistan, who still don't know when they can come home to their families. Thank you Cpl. John Phillips - you saved my life once, and I'll always love you. My thoughts are also with the Poland family, who lost their son (my friend since childhood) Cpl Brent Poland, on April 8th in a roadside bombing near Khandahar. I miss him dearly.

I wish you all a Happy Canada Day, and an early Happy 4th of July to my American friends, since I may not recover in time to send my regards next Wednesday. I shall toast you all this afternoon while I give thanks for the privelege of living in a fairly reasonable country that doesn't piss off too many people in this world.


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Help me Jeebus

Being a commuter in any large city means that you bear witness to some fairly shocking public rudeness from time to time. I have seen some incidents on the TTC ( our "metro") over the years: fist fights, lovemaking, wardrobe changes, hair & make-up, impromptu cocktail parties, gang shootings, and the occasional ditty written and performed by the mentally ill. But today I observed something that goes against everything I ever learned about Christianity.

Now, I normally steer clear of discussing religion. I don't practice one, though I was baptized United (Anglican) as a baby, way before I had the capacity to protest. I'm not spiritual, but everyone else is welcome to believe in and practise whatever faith(s) they want, as long as they don't kill me or bomb my house in the name of that faith. I don't care, just as long as you follow your rules, and you let me follow mine -- without judging me, thank you (lest thee be judged.)

I do recall from my school days that Christianity preaches a lot of lessons about love, brotherhood, kindness and understanding. I also sometimes buy into the hype that Canadians are a polite people, even though I know full well that Torontonians are on the low end of the scale. So imagine my surprise when both these "facts" were challenged during my morning commute today:

It's rush hour, I'm standing in a long line at a bus stop with close to 30 others, and I'm the 4th person in the queue. Traditionally, this is "line up" is considered a fair and orderly method to board a bus during peak times: the bus opens its doors at the front of the line, you let some riders off first to clear the seats, then you file in one at a time and pay your fare. Simple, but effective.

Today, there were some traffic delays on my route, so the bus was really packed and we knew all 30 of us wouldn't fit, so the people at the back of the line would have to wait for the next one. They normally run 2 to 5 minutes apart, so it's not really a big deal, and hey, that's life. But there was this short, fat, irritable-looking middle-aged woman who paced back and forth along the line like a caged lion.

When the bus finally arrived, Rude Lady rushed to the front of the line, pushing a young mother with her small child out of her way. The child appeared to be sideswiped across the face with Rude Lady's enormous tote bag. The kid started crying and holding his hand over his eye, while his mother gaped in disbelief and may have managed to say "hey, watch it!" or something to that effect, but I missed it because this woman was unstoppable as she assaulted her way onto that bus.

She didn't wait for the other riders to get off the bus, and she bowled over a little old lady who was delicately trying to step off the bus with her cane and a handful of shopping bags. At this point, the bus driver helped grandma retrieve her things, and then yelled at Rude Lady for her terrible behaviour. She replied by flipping him the bird and saying "fuck you, buddy", but not exactly loud enough for him to hear her.

For her grand finalé, Rude lady squeezed her capable ass into a seat reserved for handicapped/elderly people, trumping the legitimately elderly man in front of me out of his hard-earned seat. He said nothing, he just half-smiled and sighed loudly. Everyone who watched Rude Lady's performance shared a silent look that said "yeah, she's a real piece of work, huh?"

After the uproar, Rude Lady shot me a super dirty look (probably because I was staring at her), and reached into her handbag and pulled out a large thick hardcover book to read.

It was The Holy Bible.

She had it bookmarked more than three quarters of the way in, so we knew for sure she must have chosen to ignore all the lessons about kindness and doing unto others and not being a big fucking douchebag.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

the Big Tease

There are some among you who may be aware of my avid interest in Formula One racing. I'm the kind of gal who gets excited about engines, downforce adjustments, and tyre rules. Throughout the F1 season from May to October, I will voluntarily rise at 3 am on a Sunday just to watch cars qualify on a circuit overseas. I do stop short at face-painting, flag-waving, and team jersey/hat wearing. I may be a lot of things, people, but Eurotrash is not one of them.

As a Ferrari supporter, my life has been dark and dreary since Michael Schumacher retired from the sport in October 2006. He was the most winning driver in the history of motorsport, but was known as much for his arrogance, his catty comments about other drivers, and his occasional bad behaviour. He was a big part of what made F1 so much fun to watch. It was like Melrose Place with WAY better looking men.

The 2007 season has been less than stellar in my opinion. The sad departure of big-mouths like Schumacher and Jacques Villeneuve left a gaping hole of nice guys who thank their dads and talk about how nice everyone on their team is. If I wanted to enjoy the banality of generous sportsmanship, I'd watch golf.

So imagine my EXCITEMENT when rumours began to surface that Schumacher could return to Ferrari. Yes, he remains part of the team as CEO Jean Todt's assistant, but nothing more. Then last weekend, he got back into the car for a test drive/photo op at Ferrari's anniversary event in Fiorano. I knew it was a seed of hope that would never sprout, but in my dream, he snatches the keys from Kimi Raikkonen and says "Give me back my car, bitch!" and drives Ferrari to another Constructor's Championship.

So thanks, for using a necksnapping headline like "Schumi enjoys comeback in Ferrari F1 car" to make me jump out of my desk at work, flail my arms around and shout "YES!!!!!!" for all to hear. You're a bunch of Dreamcrushers, and I don't like you very much right now.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Happy Birthday Pistols at Dawn

Yesterday was Pistols' birthday, so Rocketradio would like to extend a birthday toast to its most prolific colour commentator. Yesterday was also Gay Pride Day in both Toronto and New York City (just a "coincidence", I'm sure), and I'm hungover from celebrating his Special Day with a million scantily clad, greased & glittered gay men -- the way Pistols would have wanted me to celebrate.

So I think this birthday post will be updated throughout the day as my brain emerges from its slumber and I begin to recall some lost bits of Pistols trivia to enhance your time-wasting experience...

8:45 am -- Pistols has a lot to say. He has at least 3 blogs where he writes multiple posts a day, and comments with high frequency on the blogs of others. There is no silencer available for this Pistol.

9:16 am -- Pistols loves Pistols. Anything he can do, he can do better. He can do anything better than him. Ask him about his layaway plan.

9:35 am -- Pistols dabbles in the lost art of pre-colonial facial hair grooming. He is a highly respected visionary in the field of lamb chop sideburns and unkempt beards. He claims that it helps to keep his following of sex-crazed women at a distance, but I have come to suspect it was really for his secret audition for Pirate Master.

11:23 am - Pistols has penned such unforgettable hits as "You're Not Pretty" and "Activist Girl". A total of 62 people have heard these songs, giving him a slight edge over K-Fed.

3:11 pm - Rocketradio's Worldeye spycam records evidence of Pistols' alternative "looking busy" technique at work. His primary method of "looking busy" is blogging/hanging out with disillusioned teens on MySpace.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Vote Zod in '08!

My American friends:

I really get excited when fictional characters from cheesy 70s superhero films run for the Presidency of the United States. It's like a bright laser beam of hope and fantasy that cuts through my jaded soul like a hot knife through butter. For the first time in my life, I'm wishing I had voting priveleges so I could cast my ballot for the legendary General Zod in 2008.

General Zod very nearly wiped out the Man of Steel in Superman II, so I believe he's got what it takes to succeed George W. Bush. He could end the War in Iraq by simply blowing over insurgents with his superbreath like a stack of birthday candles. Poverty? Consider it banished forever to a spinning record album floating in space for eternity. If you're not convinced, this quote from The General may change your mind:

"When I first came to your planet and demanded your homes, property and very lives, I didn't know you were already doing so, willingly, with your own government. I can win no tribute from a bankrupted nation populated by feeble flag-waving plebians. In 2008 I shall restore your dignity and make you servants worthy of my rule. This new government shall become a tool of my oppression. Instead of hidden agendas and waffling policies, I offer you direct candor and brutal certainty. I only ask for your tribute, your lives, and your vote."

Monday, June 18, 2007

Love/Hate: New Crowned Glory in the G.T.A.

Rocketfans in the Greater Toronto Area:

I am very pleased to announce that some of my photography will be on display at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art from June 21st to August 19th, as part of a group exhibit called "Love/Hate: New Crowned Glory in the G.T.A."

Opening reception is this Thursday, June 21 from 7 to 10pm. Drop in for a chat if you're in the 'hood. I'm hilarious fun! - just ask Snooze, winner of Rocketradio's "Weekend Warrior Award", for having the ya-yas to party 'round the pole with me and the Grrrls into the wee hours on a Sunday night! Or was that a Monday morning?

This is my first show in a national gallery - well, in any gallery really - and I owe it all to the Scandelles, with special thanks to Sasha von Bon Bon and Bruce LaBruce. Their film, "Give Piece of Ass a Chance" will be screened throughout the duration of the show, and they asked me to support their film with stills from our previous collaborations. The image you see above will appear with 9 additional prints ... sorry, most of them are Not Safe For Work, and I'm sure I've already caused enough trouble with your employers lately, so feel free to view them in this Flickr set when no one's watching.

the MOCCA press release for Love/Hate:

The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art is pleased to welcome the arrival of the Summer of Love and Hate with our spectacularly contentious blockbuster exhibition Love/Hate New Crowned Glory in the G.T.A. taking place in our galleries from June 21st through August 19th. Curated by MOCCA partners in crime Camilla Singh and David Liss, the exhibition features over 30 of some of Toronto’s most loved and despised artistic icons, including those who we see and hear far too much from and others who deserve to be seen more often. This exhibition is full of contenders – and it’ll be up to audiences to decide who is who in that regard.

Traditionally it is the role of museums to sort through a particular theme, idea or art scene or movement and arrive at some sort of exhibition that will distill an idea down to a palatable, life-force sucking antiseptic theory that assumes an audience need for clean, easily definable and consumable product. But that approach is, like, sooooo last century and naturally compels MOCCA to peel off into the completely opposite direction. And, more importantly, the best thing about the current Toronto art scene is that it is anything but a neat, clean, easily definable, generic mass or school like the scenes in other Canadian cities that won’t be mentioned here. The Toronto scene is far too complex and far too interesting to be tagged by branding geniuses, marketing focus groups or pointy-headed academics. It’s a big, contentious, eclectic, messy and confusing scene filled with as many armchair curators and critics as there are Maple Leaf coaches and that’s what’s so great about it! And that’s what this sprawling exhibition celebrates – the unruly spirit, the gnarly soul, the dirt in the grooves, the talent, the eccentricity, the beauty and the unappealing splendour of it all! Love it, hate it, hate to love it or love to hate it. It’s bold, it’s loud, it’s unwieldy, its flamboyant – and this exhibition is proud to state that it’s… TORONTO!!

Bum of the Week

Dear Listeners:

Your host has been so busy over the past week that she's been taking the cheap and easy way out, trying to pacify you with lo-fi images of dirty pillows. We, the Management, want you to know that this goes against Rocketradio's mandate of bringing you mildly plausible stories and fresh commentary on stale current events.

Upon receiving her third and final warning regarding her absentee behaviour and half-assed writing habits, Miss Rocket flipped us the bird and went out to get her hair done. (see final result at left, with offensive gesture edited for decency)

This sharp decline in performance has earned her the dubious honour of being named our Bum of the Week. Folks around the station have also nominated her for "Ass of the Week", something to do with a recent incident in the staff kitchen. Apparently someone violated all the lunches in the refrigerator by taking them out of their carefully labelled bags and switching the contents with other bags until no lunch was safe from the tide of mayhem. An investigation is pending. Your patience during this difficult time is greatly appreciated.


Rocketradio Management Board

Friday, June 8, 2007

'Ass'pecial post... just for Chris!

Chris has left a new comment on your post "Mon fils n'est pas une fille!": Oh for Pete's sake, please hurry up and write another post... Every time I check in to see your blog, that photo pops up. It's making me vaguely ill.

Well, Rocketradio hears your pain. We value our long-standing listeners of the hippy-esque persuasion more than you can imagine, so Chris: it is with bursting pleasure that we bring you this fine piece of ass, to start your weekend off with a bang. Now sneak out the back door early, pick up a 6 pack, ride home like hell and tell your wife you love her.

Apologies to all those who were offended by hideous celebrity offspring. It won't happen again (unless it's screamingly funny, then it will definitely happen again).

P.S.: Will Blogger boot me out for showing bum?

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Mon fils n'est pas une fille!

Bonjour mes amis! Okay, excusez-moi, but I am a little bit outraging right now, so I must drop this ugly Katrocket mask for just a moment and speak from my heart, which is so very broken deep inside my chest.

It is about my son, Réné-Charles, and all those horrible mean bloggers and tabloids that say he look like a little girl. I mean, Réné is definitely a boy name! If I want him to be like girl, maybe I call him Suzette or Hillary instead, no?

As you can see here, he look almost exactly like boy, and is not his fault he have gorgeous flowing hair like his beautiful mother. I tell him he must live every blessed moment of this big hair, because daddy is bald and he cannot fight the awesome power of his hair destiny.

So listen up, you cruel internet bitches – leave my baby alone or I swear to God, I will find 2 other boys who look just like him and bring them on tour with me as Hanson Deux, and then you will be sorry.

XO je t'aime!

Celine D.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Gluteus Maximus: "Are you not entertained?!"

dear New Yorkers and San Frannies,

Celebrate your love for guns and pussy at these screenings of Bruce LaBruce's film "Give Piece of Ass a Chance", starring the Scandelles!

Newfest - New York LGBT Film festival
Saturday, June 2 at 10:30pm
Monday, June 4 at 3:45pm
AMC Loews 34th Street Theatre 10

frameline 31
SF Int'l LGBT Film Festival
opening for RuPaul's new film, Starrbooty
Saturday, June 23, 8:30 PM
Castro Theatre

click on links for ticket info and locations

photo of Kitty Neptune courtesy of Bruce LaBruce