do your damnedest dammit

recent life, condensed:
newmarket, friends, bonfire, tito's pizza, pokemon blue, first time at cottage, blowing bubbles, hammock, perogies, late nights, montreal, cave in, isis (last show, r.i.p), more late nights, more pokemon, more perogies, toronto, g20 (boy, what a mess), illinois, cornerstone, old faces, new faces, ramen noodles, folk punx, tallbikes, fireworks, sleeping in parking lots (and being awoken by 4 cops), cereal, movies, mad hangouts, jamming, parks, frozen yogurt, being broke, and mooching food off all my friends.

there's something very heavy on my heart right now but its big and confusing and involves other people in a way but to put it simply theres a lot of things i hate, and im also everything i hate, and im feeling very alone, and its hard to grow alone. and im surprised im alive. and no one should make life commitments, or promises. and i've got little hope in the church. and i can tell you lots of terrible things, but you know what is good? G-d is good.

i'll explain it soon and try not bring any names into it.


riot 2010

it appears that everyones talking about the g20 summit in toronto. i'm not going to pretend that i know much but after spending the last few hours watching videos and reading articles and i've concluded that this is hands down the biggest thing thats happened to toronto in a long time.. and its going to be frickin' scary.

check out this site for information on why people are protesting

also watch videos from last years g20 riots in pittsburgh. they spent $20 million in security costs. this time, it will be $1.1 billion. you do the math. this is disgusting.

i will in the area at this time (seeing isis' last show in montreal and then arriving back in toronto the 24th. r.i.p!) and there is no doubt a riot is going to erupt. i will be around to peacefully protest. im going to be in the middle of it all, abide to the law, not act violently, and just pray and forgive and watch the world go to shreds in front of me.


how great Thou art

G                          C
Oh Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder           
          G                  D7         G 
Consider all the worlds, thy hands have made   
  D7        G                 C 
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder                  
                 G           D7        G 
Thy power throughout the universe displayed  
D7               G        C                G   
Then sings my soul, my Saviour, God, to Thee                
               Am   D7                G    
How great thou art,   How great thou art        
      D       G         C               G 
Then sings my soul, my Saviour, God, to Thee                
               Am   D7                G   
How great Thou art,   How great Thou art


goodbye, i

i have overwhelming amounts of thoughts right now.. enough to compel me to make a blog post (and i have not done that in a while)

theres been a lot going on
but i'll try to keep these events and thoughts short and not go too in-depth.

- Listener played at my house ( http://www.myspace.com/listener ). amazing. (Y'ALL EVER BEEN TO ARKANSAS?)
- montreal is a very sweet place
- dumpster diving field day: lite-brite, perfection, weeders, a hose, basket, canned beans, box of oreos, packaged sheets/pillows/blankets, some fruit, boxes of hallmark cards, lotion, 30+ cans of rockstar energy drinks, curtain things, chocolate.. more stuff i can't even keep track of. its amazing what gets thrown out and whats available to claim.
- i like bicycles and rooftops a lot
- i like living on my own a lot
- i just finished recording Old Homes and i'm currently mixing.. keep updated at http://www.myspace.com/oldhomes
- i decided that if i was going to drink for the first time in 7 months, i might as well do it right. i had 7 shots in 35 seconds. it was downhill from there. i had a few beers the same week but i've already decided that its not worth my time or money to continue with
- i decided that if i was going to smoke a cigarette for the first time in 10 months, i might as well do it right. i taped together 12 cigarettes and smoked them at the same time. it was downhill from there. they got smoked all the way to the filter .. im the boss amirite. but no, cigarettes are not worth my time or money either and i don't plan on being a smoker.
- been thinking of tattoos a lot .. also thinking about how i don't have a job to afford them
- my friend offered to pay for a nipple piercing for me. i hate cheese nip piercings. guys with nipple piercings are losers and i don't think its sexy on girls (well sometimes it is). alas, i accepted the offer and have a bar through my right nipple.
- silver mt zion played in toronto and i bawled to the song God Bless Our Dead Marines
- rumi is a great poet, two of my favourite stories i've read recently are Dervish at the Door (read at http://harpers.org/archive/2008/03/hbc-90002732) and Nasuh (read at http://www.stumbleupon.com/group/rumi/forum/50264/)
- im broke and amazed at how efficient i live. i hardly use utilities or produce garbage and i eat just about nothing. probably not the best but you know, savin' the bank account.
- looking forward to cornerstone in gratuitous amounts
- looking forward to watching isis' last show in montreal <3>
- saw some dude almost die at the Red Bull Air Races in windsor.. his plane was skipping across the water. what a champ.
- im helping paint this building thats been vacant for about 25 years. it used to be a TD bank. its got a vault in the basement and the other day we found a dead bird's carcass . good things might be happening for me here but i'll keep my mouth shut in case i hype something that isn't going to happen
- i absolutely love cooking and eating with friends
- once i blogged about this time that i refused communion and cried because of what i thought that meant for me. today i decided i wanted to partake in communion and , again, cried. i realized i am fragile and emotional and i love to cry. its a good feeling. on the other hand im a walking vagina. thats okay. i took a walk afterwards and have been anti-social since. i have been thinking a lot.. and at other times completely empty of thought, at which times i feel like im experiencing a hint of what could be peace in my heart.
- i feel like i could live my life without being married
- i get angry easy
- i find that i only really find happiness in purity . part of my depression and dissatisfaction to who i am is because i am truly a dickwad to a lot of people.i need to find peace, i need to learn what loving enemies is really about, and what forgiveness is all about. i want to empty myself of impurities. even in language. or what i think when i look at someone. no more selfishness. it sure is a difficult task

so much to say but i'm too tired to even revise my spelling right now, peace be with you, im sorry for who i am

im gonna change i swear


School, family and pigs.

In a way, things are eventful and in others they certainly are not.
I feel that there isn't much for me to say during a time that I don't leave my house for anything but school.
In such, a bittersweet experience.
I never thought that I'd grow to love school but I do.
But I'm at school more than I'm at home and have gotten used to never sleeping.
Coming home at sunrise everyday is one of the best feelings.
It always has been.
In earlier days, I would be hanging out with friends and strangers in summer nights talking about anything with melting hearts. Strong, deep hearts. And then walking home towards the sunrise listening to the Psalters.
Its sort of like that now except I stay up all night talking about music gear and software, and staring at a lifeless screen for hours. I enjoy it but not as much as I'd rather talk about life things. I'd rather talk about what I like about people or what little hope I have for the world or why I feel down or why I like to stay up. I'd rather hear a story or an explanation about something or plans for a better world. I'd rather hear about crazy ideas. I'd rather not feel so inadequate next to the other people in my program. I'd rather not be so redundant and base my life within a computer screen. I'd rather be outside.
I was biking home from school a few days ago around 9am and the sunshine and smell of spring's beginnings made me really happy. My mood is often reflective of the weather.
On the contrary, I was biking home a few days ago barefoot at 5am in the dark, pouring rain and felt more content than ever.
I just want to bike alone forever at my own pace.

I went to Toronto last night for Graham's birthday. A bunch of us went to see Weedeater and Black Tusk play at the Annex Wreckroom. It was one of the best show experiences of my life. We got to hang out with them after the show, and of course I love to see my friends. I reaaally do! This morning, my parents and I helped my brother move into his new apartment in Toronto. I have come to realize my parents are getting old, and for some reason every time I see my parents or my brother I just want to hug them and cry. I have no reason to really. I guess I just feel we're a really broken family. A lot of it is my fault.

I saw a dead pig today. It was whole. And huge. Some dude was walking into a restaurant with it. Casually. To be cut up and sold. I can't really describe how I felt about it but it left me feeling pretty empty.

I have my Silver Mt Zion and Gogol Bordello tickets in my pocket and summer is fast approaching.. its enough to make me happy!


angry things

i could say so many angry and negative things right now but it won't benefit me nor you.
i'm pissed and worried and miss so many things on this particular day


beautiful things

as usual things are ups and downs with me and i'm still convinced i'm bi-polar or whatever. but generally things of late have been well. i'm sure its been over 2 weeks since i've posted something here and obviously a lot has happened but not much that anyone would want to hear as it mostly involves really ordinary things like school, being stupid on chatroulette with people, and going home to spend time with family/friends (all of which are awesome...)

well there are a few things that have happened that were really wicked but i've been too lazy to write about it. generally i've just really come to realize i love to see honest and genuine people. i'd love to share a bit about it.

theres this one guy.. this old man.
i was at City Plaza downtown london with my friends Adriana and Madi. (most thursdays a couple people get together at city plaza to discuss whatever we're thinking and it usually ends up in some sort of discussion about spirituality or economics or environment or anarchism or whatever, you name it. you're welcome to come.... ) we were just chillin, shreddin' the banjo like usual, talking etc and theres this sweet sweet old man asking us to play songs and stuff. i didn't think much of it, but Adriana and Madi talked to him before i got there. he showed them pictures of his wife who was diagnosed with cancer, and he said "52 years we've been married, and everyday a honeymoon." he said, "marriage is spelt L-O-V-E, not S-E-X." His wife wanted to watch figure skating but he wanted to watch hockey.. so he just booked it over to City Plaza and let his wife have the TV at home to herself...... what a freaking sweetheart!!! seriously. that to me is just so genuine and awesome and loving. its not that these couples don't exist anywhere, i've seen tons of wicked married couples but not this old and this content. cool dude in my books.

after that we went to the Streetlight bus which is parked outside of some church (on what i believe are on Tuesdays and Thursdays??). i'm not entirely familiar with what Streetlight does but i know they are a street outreach program. they provide strangers with food and warmth, they sing songs of praise and worship, and have a sermon , etc. i swear as soon as we got on that bus i started crying. i felt the tears coming and was like Adriana i feel like i'm going to cry, and a tear went down my face. and then i was like MAN UP and i wiped that tear and completely stopped crying. almost instantaneously. i didn't like the thought of crying in front of people even if it was in an atmosphere where it was totally okay to. so i manned up. but it didn't last long. i looked around and saw the eyes of the homeless, and looked again and realized everyone was singing together, and it was just so beautiful that i let go of all of my self-worth and cried hard. well i particularly feel really bad for Madi because i've only hung out with her twice and both times i've cried. she must think i'm a giant walking vagina. its just ive removed myself from church because theres so much i don't like about it but when i see something like this that is so authentic and beautiful, it makes me re-evaluate everything. its different from church. i can't describe it, it leaves me speechless. where i stand spiritually right now is an entire other thing that i won't get into but for now we'll call it "something between agnosticism and christianity and buddhism?" with a giant question mark at the end.

i went hitchhiking this week with Mike. he hung out in newmarket for two nights while i was there. we went to Tito's Pizza which he thought was "okay" which i can only conclude that he is a failure at life and a worthless human being because Tito's Pizza makes only the best pizza in the world hands down. we also went dumpster diving and found our friends a toaster since they didn't have one in their new home. anyway, hitchhiking. its funny actually.. my roommates mom saw us, and one of my friends texted me saying they passed us while on the greyhound. it was colder and wetter than i thought which makes it a lot less fun and we were running on one hours sleep which made it sort of miserable. but its still fun. amazing right? the hospitality of people you meet while hitchhiking is amazing. i love getting in that car and seeing what people have to say. its fun, especially when you get the sketchbags, which we definitely got at least one of. i could write about the time i went by myself in the summer which was possibly the best day of my life, (no joke.. best day) but i'll save it for another time.

today i went to a conference regarding intentional community at a library in some unfamiliar (and awesome) part of town. people discussed their experiences with intentional community, especially the hardships involved, and how others could get started. my plans right now are to go to vancouver after school with Mike to start one of these communes up and neither of us are sure whats going to happen but its really what i want to do with my life more than anything, even music. it was sweet to hear from others. i like to hear from people who have something going on thats more than blind living (not that we're all blind or misled). i think intentional community is something that you have to be very committed to do but very rewarding for those within it. where i am now im sure most my neighbours hate me (probably the parties?). well i adore one particular set of neighbours who have met any need that we've asked of them and they are really sweet. they provide us with tools and go out of their way to help us out. these other guys are not very appreciative and don't make much effort to engage with us. the only time ive ever seen them really be nice towards me is when the husband caught me shovelling their driveway. i would love to get to know my neighbours here more but its harder than i thought. i would like to see community. i would like to see a community of communities. we'll see what happens.

i'm often reminded of the quote "if you're thinking, you're winning" (flobots??). i'm not going to tell you what to do but here are some of the things i've seen that i really like and if you like it too then learn from it. love your partner selflessly (love your enemies selflessly even), sing songs to each other and discuss whatever you are most ashamed of with a melting heart, pick up hitchhikers or provide any sort of hospitality to strangers, share your tools with your neighbours, get to know them. meet needs of the community. love, genuinely.

also, im getting rid of my clothes, maybe you should buy some from me. oh and the "giant walking vagina" thing, i hope i don't offend anyone, its totally not the right thing to say and is definitely misogynist, but you know.

how much of your time did i waste on this one?



i'm either bi-polar, or my mood reflects the weather. today has been the best day in weeks.


ups and downs

i like to do things for others when i can. i shovel both my neighbour's driveways and i don't tell them. i try to share knowledge with others. i make errands for people if i have the time. i clean up after my roommates (oh god.). but recently i haven't given a crap about anything or anyone but me. its selfish i know, but i haven't had any "me" time in a long long time and i think its definitely kosher for me to ignore everyone for a little bit so i can indulge in my own desires and thoughts.. at least until i catch up on things. i've been super unresponsive and antisocial lately. i'll refrain from going on about "the things i have to deal with" or whatever because no one ever wants to hear about that. the long story short is i'm NOT doing well but i think i'll be okay so leave me be, okay?

so lets hear something positive!
the weather has been great. its even been dry enough to take a bike ride! personally i don't know many better states of joy than when i am biking by myself in good weather listening to music. i recently picked up the new Silver Mt Zion album (and its frickin amazing). ive started doing yoga again, and i started exercising and drinking water regularly. today i finally got the house cleaned up from the party we had here last friday (in which i had a very enjoyable time). i finished mixing for my friend's black metal band. i have food in my stomach and i swear i had a regular sleep last night.. i have been productive in every way OTHER THAN reading and schoolwork and im okay with that for now.

in fact, as much as i love school, i don't want any part of it right now. itd be nice to have a break. ive been thinking a lot about how i miss the summer. i had a great summer. moving, new friends, warm weather, bikes, tallbikes, music, home tattoos, an empty house, dumpsterdiving, victoria park, shows, random bands and strangers sleeping at my house, not showering for 28 days, hitchhiking, protesting, making forts, short-term love, walking, maple beans with molasses, church, rooftops, starting fresh, friends, friends, friends, i miss it so much. it was also the best my health had ever been which is strange because i had really bad habits.

i apologize this blog post is close to meaningless. all i really want to say is i'm down and especially introverted and i want to be free again.


hot dog

Q: "What did the buddhist say to the hot dog vendor?"
A: "Make me one with everything."

i'll keep this one short.
i'm just starting to read a book called Sit Down and Shut Up. its some sort of commentary on buddhism and zen and stuff by some punk rocker by the name of Brad Warner. its a sequel to the book Hardcore Zen (which i must admit i never bothered to read). i must say i'm a little embarrassed by my lack of knowledge of buddhist theology but from what I do collect and understand there are some very logical and beautiful philosophies associated with buddhism that i have deep respect for and would like to learn more about. theres one thing in particular that i read today where the author quotes buddha himself that i totally dug...

"Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing; nor upon tradition, nor upon rumour; nor upon what is in a scripture. But when you yourself know: 'These things are good; these things are not blamable; these things are praised by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness,' enter on and abide in them."

something like that. on another note, the new meshuggah dvd comes out in the morning and im freakin' stoked.


starving musician

i've been living super broke recently (the last 2 weeks), and in constant stress because theres no food available (other than pasta) and i have bills to pay off that i can't afford. i also can't afford food when i'm at school. my osap appointment is friday which means i'll probably receive it next week (when my bills are overdue). some of my friends have provided me with meals, and of course i'm going to return the favour, but i feel really bad about it. here's the good news though: Mike and i took back all the empty bottles from my house which generated 99 dollars (may i also mention that out of all the empty bottles maybe 5 bottles were mine because i stopped drinking shortly after our first party?). my roommates and i agreed that we're gonna send it off to Haiti's relief fund. it'll be charged on my credit card, which i don't have to pay for a month, and i'll have my osap by then, which means i now have 99 dollars in cash until my osap comes next week (which is way more than i need). im super stoked about this because it means i can eat! can i get a hell yah? (hell yah!)

so now i am able to sustain my living but i can't help but think of these lyrics by mewithoutYou: "But now I spend my days in ever-increasingly complicated ways, Convincing myself of the rightness of each word I say. "

i won't get into it but i've always feared going to post-secondary school. i knew that there was a lot of money and debt involved and i'm very confident that money is a dangerous and evil thing. although i absolutely love being in school right now and i absolutely love music i would rather drift and live from the trashcan than bother with any of this. school is expensive, stationary living is expensive, and acquiring recording gear and music gear for school is especially expensive and continues to put me on the path of the world's patterns which i also find a little dangerous and naive. (and by the world's patterns i'm saying going to school, getting a job, having a house in the suburbs with a wife and kids, etc. this isn't all that bad but i think theres better things i can do with my life... i won't get into this right now though).

currently, my life is revolving around school, music and money. indeed when i get my osap im probably going to indulge in some more music gear including a new computer (so i can actually record music unlike this piece of crap computer im using right now). debt debt debt. it all worries me a bit. ever-increasingly complicated. don't get me wrong, ive been a starving musician the last two weeks and im really excited i have a little bit of cash in my pocket to eat now, and im stoked when i get new gear, and most things i buy thats music-related furthers my understanding in what we learn in school. but i think i could live more simply. no matter how hard i try to justify righteousness or logic in where my money goes, i still think in the back of my head i don't need any of this.



oh, where do i begin? my thoughts are a mess today.
i just cried for the first time in a while. on a side note, it felt really, really good to cry and i wish i could have dwelled in the moment a little longer to enjoy the rare strange sensation of crying but instead i chose to move on.

i went to a little thing called Presence (presencelondon.com), which happens every sunday morning at downtown london's "the arts project" on dundas. a very humble community that i don't often attend as much as i'd like (i've been busy most sundays, and also played percussion at a church in north london for a while). the discussion was about theories of just war and pacifism and if violence is ever justifiable. obviously a lot was said but admittedly my mind was sort of elsewhere. at the end of it, communion was offered to those who wished to participate. as the bread and wine came around to me, i gently refused it, and let it pass me. i didn't really think much about it for about 15 seconds and then all of a sudden i just thought "shit.." and i broke down and cried for a good 10 minutes.

in very recent times (say, november?) i decided i wanted to reflect jesus' teachings in my life but i could not accept christianity as a religion or as an absolute truth. its a completely different story altogether and i still dont have it all figured out at the time (maybe no one does). anyway, ever since i came to this decision i have never been offered communion until today, and i just frickin' just broke down, real hard. it felt like that by rejecting communion i was rejecting god. that i could not be one with god or unified with the body of christ. well long story short , god's existence is my deepest held belief but i know i cannot prove or disprove his existence. to say god exists (christianity) or that god doesn't exist (atheism) i think is equally naive. but man, jesus' teachings are incredible. woe to you who are rich, blessed are the poor, blessed are the meek and poor in spirit. the first will be last, and the last will be first. this is why i still value the way of christ.

i'm getting sidetracked again. after presence i went to starbucks (i should research to see if they are ethical yet) with some friends (and now new friends) and i kind of presented my thoughts and also thoroughly apologized for being a downer. what is the tradition of communion? to some its literal, to some its a reminder. for me it is symbolic of having christ in your soul. i cried because i felt like i was saying "god if you exist i dont want you in my soul i dont accept you as my saviour and my past with you has been sort of meaningless." really what i'd like to say is "god if you exist, i want to follow your way, i ask for your forgiveness for being such a shitwreck." of course, if there is a god, he knows that already. a lot more was going on in my head but i just don't feel like typing about it anymore right now.

we discussed about intentional community which i believe is a beautiful idea and something i wish to pursue in the future. love is so powerful. we also watched a philosophical documentary at Museum London called Examined Life. tons of great stuff to add to my already burnt out mind. but really, it was great. a discussion on wealth, consumption, individualism, and i guess just exactly what the title is. examining life and thinking consciously. "if you're thinking, you're winning"

on another side note, i went to a party last night that i actually enjoyed. london parties suck so hard. theres so much ego. i miss being in packed houses every single weekend with bands playing with rage levels off the charts. i didn't realize that i've pretty much been bathed in gold for the last few years in 905 in terms of parties. anyway, last night was great. the atmosphere of people wanting to get to know each other and have fun is such a relief when compared to all the egoists and narrow-minded douchebags i find littered around college. okay, forget that, i'm probably more narrow-minded and regretfully full of pride than most people i know but i think its an accurate generalization of what i've experienced so far in the college scene.

this is a long blog post, i don't know anyone who would have the patience to read any of this.

currently i'm off to my classmates house to watch a dvd of Pelican (myspace.com/pelican), a band i highly recommend if you like heavy instrumentals.



children running through

i used to be shy,
you made me sing.
i used to refuse things at the table,
now i shout for more wine.
in somber dignity, i used to sit
on my mat and pray,
now children run through
and make faces at me.

I've recently been revisiting a book of Rumi poems that i have. Rumi is frickin' great. solid sufi dude from the 13th century. anyways this is one of my favourite poems by him, which is funny because i have no idea what the frig he's talking about. it just kind of sticks out to me.

well i guess theres two versions of some character. their past self seems pretty humble and introverted and their present self seems more lively and playful. i'm not sure where i'd like to be. i'm definitely a shy guy, and often pretty cautious at the table if we're talking in a literal sense (except now i completely don't eat or drink just about anything.. but thats another story). humbleness is one of my favourite qualities of anyone. but the extrovert seems to have a more general feeling of freedom and joy. i value my time alone in humility but i think sometimes i need to sing and shout and see more children smiling and playing. i need to experience more compassion and love instead of just dreaming about it and writing about it. my heart cries out for purpose and i think i can find it in others. im an introvert naturally and respect others that are, but damn, i wish i could figure out how to talk to people. i don't have to be eccentric but i'd like to find a better balance of interaction and meaningful connections with people.

someone.. explain this poem to me!
and teach me to love


currently i do not eat meat or animal byproducts
but i am not a vegan
i do not smoke
i do not consume alcohol or caffeine
i am not straightedge
i believe in god and strive to follow jesus' teachings
i am not christian
i do not know the future
i cannot make commitments or promises
but i have confidence and hope in a few things