Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Causing Endings to Create New Beginnings

It's been a while since I've had anything to really say on here and it's partly because I just don't even know where to start and partly because I don't really have an identity yet.

I'm just going to come right out and say it: I don't know who I am.

I mean of course I know my name and things that I like and don't like but I'm still searching for my essence. For so long I've been so concerned with those around me that I never really took time find out about myself. 

Things are changing, I think for the better but there's always doubt, of course - I've cut almost all of my friends out of my life, which I admit seems drastic but there's something to be said about the kind of close friends that I had. Things like: volatile, self-centered, dramatic, always selling themselves short, uninspiring and because of all those things, the lack of attaining their true potential. And I know that seems very negative and demonizing but their traits forced me to ask myself,

 "what is about me that attracts those kind of people?"

By focusing on others, I was able to not focus on myself and not have to deal, I guess, maybe. Or maybe, I just really like helping people and guiding them to their full potential, which really makes me sound like an egotistical douche bag, I know, but everyone has their gifts and I think to some degree that might be mine. Maybe.

Some would say maybe you should be a guidance counselor but it goes further than that. Maybe a life coach (how does one even become a life coach anyways?). I feel like at least I would be earning a living but at what cost and if I did do that would I ever find myself? So many questions, so few answers.

In all my friends, I saw unbelievable potential: The writer, the political satirist, the CFO, the plus sized model (I know this one's maybe not the strongest but she is gorgeous), the CEO of an architectural firm and lastly the COO.

Some of those are really specific, some are more vague but all are 100% accurate to the person. I, however, have no idea what I am supposed to be,

Those who can't do teach, much?

I had a few ideas like having my own fashion house with designs by me, run by my sister and my brother as the buyer - a real family business. Something that would bring us and our strengths together but most importantly, something that we could be really proud of and call our own.

But that idea means that my sister and my brother would have to see their own potential and believe in the idea and most importantly in me... And that's never going to happen.

So here I am on my own, trying to figure ISH out and I know I'm going to need people by me  and a strong support system but for now, I'm trying to find people who are inspired, who have vision, that don't just suck the life out of everything but instead give life to things others saw as impossible... People like me.

My life story is far from done and every day I make progress towards the faint idea that I have of myself. It's slow, kind of lonely and I'm sure some of those things will morph along the way but for now, I'm just going to concentrate on just being me.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Newsroom on HBO Sundays at 10pm

 I can't tell you how many times I've asked the TV or my computer screen "how is this news?" in the last decade. I can't be the only one because it seems that maybe Aaron Sorkin had that feeling one too many times and came up with The Newsroom.

It's based around a group of news professionals that decided that news shouldn't be about ratings, it should be about something bigger- informing, inspiring, being accountable. You know, the stuff that doesn't seem to count these days. I would even argue that there is strong a parallel that Aaron Sorkin is trying to make the same point about television.

The Newsroom, which I think was hastily critiqued in a harsh light by most, is a show that takes a look at a fictional American cable news show and how a decision is made on their part to not be a slave to ratings and do the job that news was created for: to factually inform the masses. Where a hard path of integrity versus ratings is examined.

The idea that we have to make the CHOICE to be better, to do better, want more for ourselves and for each other is one that rings out past their fictional world and into our reality.

Politics play a huge role in this show, which is apt seeing as the state of politics, especially in North America, is so focused on the scandalous that you can rarely find the facts and it is almost impossible to find the truth because of conglomerates that own everything- including politics and especially the news.

This show is akin to the Daily Show, the Colbert Report and Real Time in the way that it points out the complete ridiculousness that is the politics of today.

Will McAvoy (Jeff Daniels) answering the question: " Can you say why America is the greatest country in the world?"

Sports Night questioned the integrity of sports casting. Those shows that did nothing but cater to the scandalous sides of athletes and the world of pro sports. The main anchor, whom also works alongside his best friend, starts looking at the news that he's reporting and the way it might impact his son. the idea of  "we're better than this, I'm better than this-we can also have integrity." It was a smart show, that I happen to believe was ahead of it's time.

The West Wing saw a fictional America elect a president with integrity. Even through the inter character relationships, it still came down to acting with integrity and doing the right thing, for the president himself, his staff and their America.

To say that Sorkin is becoming a parody of himself is to totally miss the point completely. Even though reviewers feel like they are getting hammered over the head with the same point, they still manage to be missing it and missing out on a great drama that we so need.

A lot of what I've read in reviews are critics who feel that it's preachy, wordy and though it could be a good story is going to fall short because the first two episodes took the time to set up the story and the characters. Well, I suppose in the world that we now live in where 30 seconds and 140 characters is all anyone seems to have time for- I shouldn't expect more, even from journalists. 

No wait, that's exactly what this show is about- how rushing to get the jump on something can ruin journalistic credibility and journalists should want for more.

To those that believe that they don't want to be told what's good for them, I say, grow up and I also believe that those are some of the same people that  scream about government "being in their business." When more people are interested in TMZ than finding out the truth behind decisions that are made for them by the elected that aren't even actually interested in the people but in pure dollar signs- we should be worried... And maybe someone should be telling us off for not caring or bothering to demand more.

Aaron Sorkin has never been the type to dumb down for the sake of ratings, all the success that he has had has come from just doing the thing he does best, writing smart and riveting pieces of thoughtful entertainment. Yet somehow he is faulted for it.

What exactly are we saying when we have all these anti- bullying campaigns but when someone smart puts their ideas out there they get shot down and given a metaphorical wedgie for being different? Or in this case, just for being Aaron Sorkin.

We're 4 episodes into the very first season with a cast who are still trying to get a feel for each other and the pace, give it a chance.
It's not about how Sorkin rules with an iron fist or whatever other sorted or real things he has been accused of, those aren't the things that matter. What matters is the level of quality that he puts into his work. 

Integrity. Period.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

As my life goes, I can always count on one thing- that I can count on nothing.

Since I've been on sick leave from..yea..Life. (More on that to come)
I've had to re assess and create more contingency plans for the future.

I know I want to be a writer
I know I want to be a designer
I know I want my business to be based in e commerce


I didn't know how I was going to support these loves, these wants.
I, like many others have student loans to pay off and I really can't afford to not work while going to school- so I thought of an alternate plan.

In Quebec, we're very lucky to have support in training for trades, where you can earn professional degrees or college equivalency degrees in 2 years or less. 

Well, one of these trades is Web page design. I'm thinking 2 birds, one stone and saving revenue on a future middle man. So my 2 year plan has turned into a 5-10 year plan but an empire cannot be built in a day and that's what I want; a design empire.

Right now, to keep myself inspired and creative; I'm redesigning spaces in my home to reflect the personalities of the people who live in it (the last time it was even painted was about 10 years ago). I'm re learning everything about math and actually starting to enjoy it with Khan Academy. And, I've flushed out the outlines for a few novels.

I just feel like I'm caught in an elastic band and the tension is at the point where it's gotta give, you know- I just want to finally be able to accomplish the goals that I set for myself for once... So here's to the future!


*Special shout out to my anonymous follower- Thanks for coming by and wondering where I was at : )

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Fashion: The Modern Woman's Faux-Pas

Oh ladies, what have we done?

We can give birth, juggle career and family but we have the hardest time furthering our sex. We're long past burning bras but are we really?

I was reading The Huffington Post this morning and two articles caught my attention- One written by Hallie Seegal, called Letting It All Hang Out: How I Made Peace With My Small Boobs  and the other by Robin S. Rosenberg: Women and Fashion.

Both of these women made points about women accepting their bodies for what they really are, which is an idea I've been toying with since high school. There is a lot of talk about accepting your body and loving yourself, which is great, but then you go shopping  and all of that self confidence melts away- whether you are a straight size or a plus size, everyone goes through it at some point.

Ms. Seegal's article about unlocking her personal freedom by unhooking her bra for good was a bit of an eye opener for me. I know that my smaller breasted friends are always complaining about their underwire digging into their rib cage and I've always suggested soft cup bras to them but the idea of going without... Risque, I thought. But it's true, why not just go without?

Will we ever be comfortable with the way we are- how we are shaped?

There are constant images thrown at us about how our breasts should look and I'm on the other end of the spectrum. Where Hallie Seegal might have been conveyed that she didn't have enough, I was conveyed that I had too much. Media and men are always putting emphasis on bigger breasts but apparently there is such a thing as having too much. While she might have been struggling with her bras, I was struggling with my bras and my clothes. Even though there is a huge importance on breast size, clothes are often not made for bigger ones. Problems like gaping button holes, an excess of cleavage and sometimes not even having the option of a bra in your size without paying $100 are something that I've always struggled with. It's a contradiction that women have dealt with forever and yet instead of embracing what we have and insisting that we be catered to, we instead feel the need to change ourselves to suit others perception. When will they be happy? When will we be happy and comfortable with ourselves?

Dr. Rosenberg makes a point  about how the feminine ideal often means pain or discomfort or lack of functionality (i.e foot binding, heels), she also makes a point of how women are not making things better as we continue to perpetuate these forced ideals amongst ourselves and not supporting our fellow woman. Are we doing it to ourselves out of competition? How are we to know who is the Queen B if we all look equally good?

I find that more than true in my life.

Having worked in an office of 30 employees where only 2 of them were men, I can tell you that it was the most hostile environment I have ever worked in. And, the higher, more pointy toed, loudest heels often determined the pecking order in the company. Every high ranked title other than the CEO was held by women and not just women, mothers but there was no nurturing, just power bitches- ready to eat you up to prove that they had the biggest cojones. What are we teaching the newer generation of girls? Why are we doing these things to each other and making it even more of a man's world?

And I've noticed this kind of thing with my own girlfriends over the years.

When I was the skinny one in my group of friends, I would stop my heavier  friends from leaving the house looking like a hot mess. I even spent less time getting ready for my own prom just so that I could help my heavier friend look her best for her dates prom. But now that I'm the bigger friend, I'm starting to feel like they just want me around because it makes them feel better about themselves. I don't think that's unique to my circumstance-  it may not always be conscious but we have become more superficial thereby sabotaging each other in the process.

My mom always told me to look my best best 'because you never know who you're going to see.' So when I don't have the right clothes for an occasion I sometimes refuse to go out, which makes my friends think that I'm becoming a hermit hiding away from the world. I could see how they could think that if they didn't know me but for the last year I have been bitterly complaining about how the latest trends (i.e skinny jeans, tights, belting it, stilettos, shirt dresses) are just not made for my shape and how I can't find anything that really suits me. So I decided I was going to make my own clothes, screw androgyny driven trends.

I have no clothes to wear because clothes simply aren't made for my body type (plus size, no hips and huge breasts, plump butt) and I feel very uncomfortable wearing the clothes that I have or that or supposedly made for me (Addition-Elle, MXM). This is something I've been trying to convey to my friends and something that they can't seem to understand. There's always someone that they know that is just as big as me that find clothes that fit.

But do they look fantastic and are they the same shape as me? Or do they just look good (slash) passable?

Both my size 4 and size 6 friends have very unhealthy eating habits and not just in the eating junk way but also in the fact that they go from near starving themselves to binging for a week. And why? because they want to look like some 'star' or their gay boyfriend told them they could stand to lose more weight. Obviously, there is a bigger psychological issue there but I really don't think they are isolated cases. It seems that even though there was women's lib, we are more damaged than ever before in the way we see ourselves and so to make ourselves feel better, we have to make each other feel worst.

As women, we have let ourselves be told how we should look for far too long. We have conditioned ourselves to settle and have been brainwashed into thinking that someone else knows what's best for us.  For decades trends have been recycled but there has been no taking into account that over the past few decades women's shapes have changed.  The clothes don't reflect those wearing them.

I have problems with fashion designers because they claim it's simply too hard to make clothes for those other than a size 6. There is such importance put on their greatness but how great can they be if they can only design for one size and one shape.

Isn't it time we demand more ladies? Let me know what you think.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Plan to be Happy

There's been a quiet storm raging in me for the last 5 years and only now am I starting to really shed some light on it. Change is a word that is often thrown around but the thing about change is, it takes work. Duh right? But I don't think most people actually get it.

People don't really believe that change is possible, 'you can't teach an old dog new tricks' and such but really change is something that happens on the inside and is then projected outwards. Pretty sound logic.

If you ask those close to me, they would probably say that everything is the same but  that really stems from ' action speak louder than words.' It's as though we've found all these ways to denegate each other, as to feel better about only superficially supporting one another. So I'mma do me.

When I graduated high school unlike everyone else, I had no plan. I was good at several things but I had no real dream. Well I am happy to say that a decade later, I'm finally excited about my future and dreaming big!

On top of writing self help and fashion literature for 20 and 30 somethings, I am also aiming to be a Rubenist fashion designer and retailer. Maybe it's seems like a lot but you have to remember I've spent a decade in the slow lane, I am soo beyond ready to shift gears.

Next month I register for fashion school but I would only start in November, so the next year and a half I'm going to be blogging more and more about fashion. After spending a year sketching ideas, I'm ready to put my ideas into action and see what works, what doesn't and how I can build on them. To be clear, I've only sewn a few times in my life but it's never been towards a real goal, so I'm elated by the challenge and the process of learning a new skill and implementing it.

People around me are casting doubt around like their playing dice because they simply don't know that side of me but... Oh well, haters gonna hate.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Happy St-Jean!

Well it's over but... Bonne St-Jean!!

This is a holiday that really grew on me. I mean it BIG in Quebec but I still sometimes feel uncomfortable celebrating it.  I often had to work during the festivities  and even at time and a half it was apparent that I was getting the short end of the stick, when people would walk in singing and buying stuff for their BBQs, drunk and happy. I wanted that, I wanted to bond with my fellow Quebec homies and no money couold replace that.

And then there is separatism which is still a big part of the whole celebration. It's a holiday that went from being religiously rooted from the first European settlers to a political rally. I love Quebec and I'm so happy that my mom chose to immigrate here and then decided to have me. And, while I agree with a lot of the reasons, I still truly believe that separation would hurt in the end, no matter how many times or how loud we sing Le Plus Beau Voyage.

So I feel a little restricted in that regard but I've learned how to observe it in my own little assimilated way. None the less, I celebrate St-Jean not because I'm religious or a separatist, I celebrate La fete de la St- Jean Baptiste because I celebrate the people whose culture I share and of which I'm proud to call my own.

Thursday, June 16, 2011


I'm a big board game fan, I may be calling out my squareness but I don't care- I love the competition of it. There is one that holds a special place in my heart, LIFE.

Ah, the game of life, a throwback to my youth.

What I think I like the best about life is how it relates to my life, I guess it gives me hope in away.

For the longest time I would always choose to start off going to college, which starts you off in debt right off the bat. Guess what happened in real life? Then after getting tired of losing , I changed my strategy- go with a career first. Interestingly enough, when I had asked my mom what she thought I would be well suited for as I was getting ready to go into college, she said this: 'do a career program, come out after 3 years and start making money right away.'

Meet my awesome superpower- 20/20 hindsight vision.

As I've mentioned before, I've been switching jobs pretty regularly since I began working, searching it seems but for what? Maybe a Jack of all trades bonus.

That doesn't exist in real life, only in the enhanced version of the computer game but there is still wisdom in it. Sometimes you have to try a bunch of different paths  to get to where you need to be. There might be a time when you're half way through the game and your salary is 20 000 a year. A time when you get paid just to end up having to give it away in taxes, or something needs to be fixed or you get sick and things are pretty shitty.

But, then you land on a switch careers spot and suddenly things start looking up. You catch a few breaks or take the right paths, maybe get a few bonuses  and you've learned some valuable lessons along the way. Is this the game or my actual life?

My enthusiasm over life-(mine, not the game ) is that I've been sitting on the edge of my seat waiting to hear back from this company that I really want to work for but I was still nervous about a few details yet still no word, I'm thinking it maybe isn't meant to be. Then yesterday I applied for a position on a whim and today I got a call back. I'm really excited and I got a good vibe but the greatest part is that it would put me back on the path towards my goal. This job could really open doors for me with the bonus of keeping me active. Could I be more in love with life right now?

What a game.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Woe was me

I'm a simple girl, just trying to make my own way around life and make the best decisions possible for me but sometimes I really get the feeling that all the world's forces are working against me in some way.

Lately I've been really torn about the work that I've been doing, why I was doing it and what I was getting out of it. I've found that the older I get the less happy I seem to be and everyone around me just say ridiculous things like- That's a part of aging.

The major influences in my life are always calling me unfocused and I am forever defending myself; Which is not just a pain but downright insulting.

Brought up by old fashioned Caribbean parents and although they put me in different activities, there really wasn't encouragement. At first, it was a way of keeping me busy while they were at work, then it was to keep me from getting pregnant. They weren't like other parents sheltering me and coddling me; They didn't have that luxury and I in turn,wasn't afforded the fortune of being able to be selfish.

Look, I'm not contesting the fact that everyone has a hard life- the grass is always greener, right?  I just see the bigger picture and understand that not every life can take the same journey; That sometimes it's the most tumultuous path that that yields the biggest rewards.

Do I sometimes wish that my life was different or easier in certain ways?

Hells yeah. But I work through those moments of weakness because deep down I know it's just what I had to go through to get to my destination.

Ok so I sound like either a hippie or someone who has just found religion but I've decided. This part of my biography is to be entitled: The light.

I've been trying to find a job but not just any job, one that suits me, that I can grow in, a decent environment, with decent people; what seems to be defined as the 'perfect job' but that just doesn't compute with me. Those aren't crazy demands are they? Why are those things considered do far out of reach?

I have had many jobs, which means I'm uber experienced but that tends to be viewed negatively because it shows instability. Look, I will admit to having a bit of a restless soul but I also understand the value of hard work- I worked in high school, through college and I always add to a team in a positive way. My problem is that not all of these jobs added to my life in an equally positive way. When am I allowed to ask for more? Why don't I deserve more?

In my quest to evolve in life ( I wouldn't call it a career because it's so far from what I actually want to do- which is write) and fight for what some people attain so easily and take for granted. I had to start believing my own hype so to speak. I've proven to myself over and over again that there's no situation that I could not thrive in but doubt always sneaks in there and if I couldn't believe in my power, how then could I sell it to someone else?

In trying to figure myself out, I actually took the time to assess my successes versus my failures and thinking back looking for regret but I have no regret- I made the best possible choices that I could have made for my situation. And I realised that my 'failures' actually taught me about myself and my strengths, none of them were huge, some of them were unavoidable but analyzing each opened a new level of understanding about myself and choices I make.

I'm not 18 anymore, so taking half a decade to find myself, if you will, was a really risky move. The kids I graduated with are know momsbusinessmenpoliticiansbuildingecofriendlyhouseswiththeirplanssuccessandsuch and I was...

I was constantly feeling the pressure to compare myself to other people; I had to be highly promotedlikeherIhadtobesthimIneedherbody. ENOUGH!

This is the year I take the sum total of my experiences and turn them into the most winning outcome for me. One of the most important things I learnt was that not everyone can take the same path. I have a friend that immediately needs to have the exact body of the skinny Lady Gaga, has to be married, have a house, kids- all because of status. And because of what I learnt about myself and how miserable it makes her as she tries to keep up-  I say in the wise words of Rage Against the Machine, FUCK YOU I WON'T DO WHAT YOU TELL ME!

It took some work and ate up precious time but it seems to be sticking. Meanwhile another obstacle was waiting in the wing....

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

A Question of National Identity

So before I get into the break down of what each party offers, I stopped to think of the things that affect us as Canadians and the things that would need to change in order for us to not only survive but allow us to strive.


As Canadians we are working harder and longer but yet we enjoy less fruits of our labour than generations past. We have less time to do the little essentials that are needed such as going to the doctor, dentist, with our kids or even on vacation to balance out the stress of everyt day life. Less time to spend in the garden or growing. Ultimately less time to think and if you're not thinking how can you make the right decisions?


Money makes the world go round and though it grows on trees it's less than abundant.  We have become a nation of people on a treadmill, literally but also figuratively.  Let's look at the fact that actually running on a treadmill means your in comstant movement while going nowhere- some would say like the people of Canada. Less money for pensions, less money for infrastructures, less money for schools, arts, sports and depressingly on and on. And the only people who seem to be thriving are those that broker deals behind closed doors; the people who can afford to pay more into our society and don't.


Everyone needs a job,  it's simple economics- no job, no money. We rely so heavely on imported jobs that we have our back to the wall. How can the government make it so we aren't bullied into doing things or making decisions that don't benefit the people of Canada? How do we implement Canada first job creation?


The smarter the people are, the stronger the country. That being said, learning is something that should be done over a lifetime but often after one finishes school, you barely have enough time to eat or sleep during your 40-60 hour work week. Meanwhile, the schools that we have are in serious need of help and teachers and methods have not stepped into the world that we are now living in. The schools are outdated, the teachers are outdated and the methods are outdated. How can we not fall behind in the world rankings?


From our lakes, to our forests and national parks- canadians are very proud of their natural treasures and spend a decent amount of time ensconsed in them. Understandably we want them protected. We also take green matters seriously and could be at the forefront of the green revolution because of our ressources, so why aren't we?


This one is a big one. We congratulate ourselves so much for not being like the Americans when it comes to healthcare but realistically, we are only slightly better. Some provinces have better healthcare than others; more doctor's, nurses and specialists so they don't really feel the squeeze. In other provinces there are long waiting times at the hospital (6-12hrs), to see specialists (3-6months or longer) and those things are rendered easier if you have a family doctor, which many people are lacking. Not to mention that some of our hospitals are in very bad shape. How then can we be healthy enough to contribute to economic growth when because of delays we end up costing the government more?

I realize that not everything can be done at once but the longer we wait to get on these things the worse off we will be. I want to look at my country and be proud that we not only survived one of the greatest financial disasters of all time but that we innacted measures to solidify our place in the world market by making smart decisions early on and focus on what is truly important- The people.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Countdown to Election Day

I've used this blog until this point to get some things off my chest about things that are on my mind, but that really only affect me but this time I want to talk about something that affects me in a much broader sense; Canada.

We are in the middle of an election, a time where change is made and futures moulded and a good time to ask ourselves who and what we want to be as a country. What I've found however is that most people, myself included, are lost when it comes to making a decision. 

You see it's easy to say just look at the different platforms and make a decision based on that but it's a lot harder because you have to inform yourself through a heap load of bullshit that is spewed in the name of getting a party into power. We as Canadians have banked so much on our international reputation that it seems we forgot that it's something that needs to be worked on and invested in. We've spent so many years looking south and trying to catch up to the Americans that in the process we've grown to be plagued by some of the same problems that are plaguing them, especially on the political front. Maybe it's time we picked another country as a role model- one that's more in line with Canadian values or since we are a tapestry of many cultures, maybe we should take the best of the top few. And maybe that's the wrong approach but not doing anything while our infrastructure, education and health standards drop aren't the right approach either.

Furthermore, the youth vote is almost non existent even though it's our future reality that they are playing with, coupled with the fact that there most likely won't be enough money for us to retire, ever. Yet we sit idly by as party heads protect their investments first and put the good of the people/ country second, while we content ourselves with Twitter, Facebook and other distractions because it's just easier- sounds a lot like the U.S doesn't it?

The problem is that no one is really willing to enter into political discussion, as many still believe in not talking about political or religious beliefs. Which is all well and good but without taking account of others opinions how then can we form an informed decision? Last night I found myself in a really good conversation about the parties after it was mentioned that there 2011 Federal Election- Explore the Canadian political landscape .

I have been having many debates with my friends over the last couple of weeks about Canada's political landscape but the hardest part was trying to decipher what the parties actually stood for, the second hardest was what kind of person we are voting in. A popular theory is to vote for who's going to work the best for you in your particular riding; this is flawed thinking because the individual ridings add up to seats which form a majority or minority government and ultimately decides our Prime Minister. But what if you don't like the person that represents the head of the party of the person that you voted for in your riding?

Well the great thing about Canadian democracy as it is, is that every party pretty much offers the same thing; it's where they differ and how what they implement will affect our future that we should be contemplating.

So I'm going to take some time to sort through the murk and check back with what I find, maybe it will help- maybe it won't but if I learned anything from the Americans it's that we can do better, we just have to believe in change and ultimately in ourselves.