Frustration & Damnation

Don’t know if bad news always comes in three’s, but it came in two’s for me this afternoon.  One hot mess right on top of another.  Damn.  My US work visa application was down to the final days for reply – well I got one today.  I might have been happier with a YES or a NO, but a request for “MORE INFORMATION” so that I’m in suspended animation for yet another month . .  .making me crazy.  So back to digging out more information that will float around in various in-boxes for a while and eventually make it’s way to those security folks. Meanwhile, I sit and wait, not knowing what my future is going to be, where I’m going to live and, quite literally, having no back up plan. Frustration

And no better luck on the home sale front.  Who would have thought, back in those heady real estate days of a few years ago, that it would be difficult to sell a spacious townhouse, with an income suite, in a sought after family neighbourhood in Vancouver.  Not me, that’s for sure.  But difficult is what’s happening.  There is a glut of properties on the market (“excess inventory”) and a limited number of buyers.  And those buyers appear to be sitting on the sidelines waiting to see what’s going to happen.  Well something a bit more substantial than me flinging a hissy fit, I mean.  ‘Cause that would be really helpful.  Damnation.


But none of that is going to help, I’ve been playing this waiting game for sooo long now, what’s another few weeks?  Wait, let me drag that pen out of my eye . . .no really, going to be fine.  Planning your life more than say, oh a week in advance is really over-rated.  NOT FOR ME.  I’m a control and planning freak, it’s what I do.  Having no control and not being able to plan is killing me.  And if I think about all the weeks of keeping my home spotlessly clean for showings . . .and the weeks yet to come . . .better hide everything sharp.  Aussie humour – pen in the eye is the ultimate sign of frustration . . .see below.


So I did what any sensible person would do, I called a friend. She’s not as prone to ride the emotional roller coasters as I am.  Whew, talked me down off the ledge again.  Re-frame she said, you just have to find a way to re-frame the downside to an upside.  So, with that in mind, my Top 8 (tried for Top 10, couldn’t do it!)  reasons why not having a work visa, not selling my house and likely not moving until September is a good thing (lies, all lies!!).

1.  At least I didn’t get one out of two. Imagine if I got the work permit but couldn’t sell. Or sold my house and had nowhere to go?  Ok, that’s not a bad re-frame.

2.  Vancouver is really fun and really beautiful in the summer.  Gorgeous beaches, kayaking, hiking.


3.  Blue Rodeo, one of my favourite bands, is headlining the Burnaby Roots and Blues Festival in August, and I’ll be here for it!!


4.  Think of all the airmiles I’m going to earn flying back and forth from Van to Louisville, Richmond and Baltimore for all the concerts and festivals I’ve got planned on the East Coast.  Yowzers, that’s a LOT of miles. Careful planning required.

5.  Instead of packing and moving, July and August are going to be summertime funtime.

6.  The family on the West Coast get to keep me just a little bit longer.  And I get to keep them a little bit longer.  Happy!

Mothers Day Port Douglas Australia 2009 (111)

7.  No sad goodbye’s any time soon;  and maybe a couple of surprising hello’s because  I’m still in Van, not half way across the country.

8.  Packing boxes sucks, so putting it off for another month, yeh, I can live with that.  I know it’s just putting off the inevitable, but, oh well, so be it.

Like most of their fans, when The Civil Wars announced a “break” from touring a few months ago I thought they were done and I was crushed.  Just thrilled that Joy and John Paul have a brand new record out August 6th, here’s the first song,  The One That Got Away.


In the Future, There Will Be No 36C. What?

Thanks to Slate for the funny story below.  After all these years, and considerable time and energy spent researching the subject, I suspect that like a lot of women I’m not the only one still confused and frustrated with bra sizing.   No two are ever the same.  And just once I’d LOVE to find a bra that was both comfortable and attractive.   An added bonus would be if this was possible for under $80.   Dream on, Pollyanna.

And don’t get me started on bathing suits.  Is a sexy but supportive bikini that stays put if you are doing anything other than reclining with an umbrella drink too much to ask?  I’ve had to go chasing an errant top in the ocean one too many times – my first reaction whenever I am swimming is the reach to check that the girls are still where they are supposed to be, at least nominally covered by those insanely expensive scraps of lycra.    The only solution I’ve found so far is to hang out at beaches where tops are not required.  (see Wreck Beach, Vancouver!)


And my favourite comment on the story was this one

“Huh. Any engineer knows that the shape of the waveform is just as important as the amplitude, frequently even more so.”

Here’s the Slate story by Katy Waldman

The poetry of the bra size was on display in the New York Times this morning. “On they go, the canonical brassiere sizes, up to at least a 50N,” wrote Stephanie Clifford. “They have been around since the 1930s, maddeningly unconventional standards, varying from brand to brand, from demi-cup to strapless—a kaleidoscopic vision, in lace and elastic, of fashion, culture and the enduring power of marketing.” It is a strangely beautiful and breathless way to talk about a system of bra measurements so imprecise as to hardly manage to fit anyone.

bra size.jpg.CROP.rectangle3-large

Each breast is a snowflake, says my editor (words to live by), but for years, our bras have failed to respect the individuality of the breast. Rather than pampering the girls with tailored fits, we’ve shoved and shimmied them into unforgiving, fabric-and-wire prisons. Here’s how the current system works: If the difference between your ribcage and your breast at its roundest point is 1 inch, you get an A cup. Two inches yields a B cup, and on up to N (who knew?) at 14 inches. That’s it: Differently shaped busts are treated identically. No wonder the Internet teems with tales of liberation, in which women decide to go full boob anarchy and abandon the undergarments altogether.

Now, though, according to the Times, we may no longer be forced to choose between awkward constraint and total lawlessness. After eight years of research, the underwear company Jockey International plans to introduce 55 new bra sizes—“a mass market answer to custom fittings that have become increasingly popular in boutiques and high-end department stores,” Clifford explains. These sizes take into account both contour and amplitude: They consist of 10 differently scaled cups in varying shapes. For $19.95, Jockey offers potential customers a sizing kit—replete with a measuring tape—with which they can experiment. The bras themselves come in black, white, and beige. They have numerical descriptions like 5-34 and 9-32 and cost $60.

I think I may have just lost some of you. Sixty dollars, no lie, is kind of pricey for a bra, and with all those numbers, who can keep track? But consider the totalitarian bent of the current taxonomic system, and consider how you feel about your current snowflake holders. As a longtime underwear discontent, I am ready to lift my cup(s) to a new world order.

Couldn’t come up with a thematically appropriate song that didn’t make me cringe, so here’s some summer fun from a local Vancouver musician, Jake Bugg.