Easy to digest world news, Betty White, Jamie Foxx

What do the items in the title have in common? Not much. But they all feature in this entry.

“In April’s elections, prime minister Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson said he would introduce sweeping measures to ease the burden of household debt. And now he has put the country’s krona where his mouth is. The writeoff of €24,000 per mortgage will reduce household debt by 13% according to the government’s website.”
(Iceland writes €24,000 off every mortgage, Irish Examiner)

A referendum later this month proposes to ban Swiss-based businesses from paying anyone a salary more than 12 times that of the lowest paid staff.
(Swiss rise up to fight income gap, Globe and Mail)

An article featured beside one of the above is about Miley Cyrus and her karaoke #1 hit Wrecking Ball. I didn’t click it – you’ll have to get those details for yourself – but here is something that is probably even better.


Should I go full ADHD and put up some music, too? Maybe later – for now I’m keeping a few tracks to myself. Mezcal, dear reader?

Posted in L'autre bout du monde, Life, m.Staff-carboN at December 9th, 2013. No Comments.

One day

For you from Israel, dear reader.

Posted in L'autre bout du monde, Life, m.Staff-carboN at October 5th, 2013. No Comments.

Fjara, then Prague

About to close up my suitcase and head out the door for a bus headed to Prague. Fjara fills my flat for what must be a fifth time this morning. What a strange song, like a prayer chant, rising louder when it fails to materialise anything important or meaningful. I imagine these the last words sung to what by the end of the track is a dead God.

Posted in Anti-theism, General, L'autre bout du monde, m.Staff-carboN at September 19th, 2013. No Comments.

You can fly

Everyday on the way to the store I am reminded that…

you-can-fly graffiti

Posted in L'autre bout du monde, Life at August 23rd, 2013. No Comments.

Summer night storm

Last night up and down the street windows slammed shut from the approaching storm. There must have been a dozen slams, maybe two. All were dwarfed by the thunder clap coming from the clouds encroaching the space over the street between the buildings.

While securing a window, a flash of light made everything pale, then whiter until finally only the contours of the darkest shapes were barely spared by the flash. When the thunder broke the light, the panes in the windows and the floor under my bare feet trembled.

Once darkness filled the living room to the brim and the tremors subsided, my thoughts drifted to life in many parts of the world, as described by CBC’s Nahlah Ayed:

receptionWhat we saw in one experience is something the Lebanese have seen far too often, and have had to long contend with. So I’ve been flooded with advice: put protective film on the windows; buy glass with wire mesh; I’ve even been advised to build walls to replace the sliding doors. Others bluntly advised me to move to a place with fewer windows.

I sheepishly appreciated and accepted all the advice and concern from a people who have truly suffered, a people who have often paid with more than material loss. What made me much sadder than the fate of our offices, though, is that implicit in all the advice was an expectation, even a conviction, that this kind of violence will happen again.

In Russia

The Matryoshka's Daughter, by curiousmoth

In Russia some apartment buildings are putting in lifts that charge a fee per floor. You can buy monthly lift cards. The management says free lifts break weekly because children ride them excessively for fun. Those living in these buildings complain that even when they buy a monthly card they end up using the stairs more than the lift – it’s out of service more often than not.

Posted in L'autre bout du monde, Life at August 21st, 2013. No Comments.

‘When you’re a stranger’

I sit in bed in my hoodie, pyjamas, and thick socks sporting maple leaves. My last Canadian car-ride playlist is on, the rain has lingered around long enough to cause my joints to begin protesting, and I’m coming down with two sicknesses at once.

These past few weeks have been the busiest since last summer and working at the summer camp. And so, any feelings of disappointment over not getting a spot there this year were promptly bumped to the back of the line. For now my entire aim is to get through the work, do a good job and get back to a normal pace.

I went to the milk bar for dinner at the mall, and there saw the woman I noticed several times on the streets while drinking tea at the window. Today I remembered seeing her in the mall before. Like today, then she was sitting alone and reading a book – I wondered its title. But most of the time, I see her walk around the neighbourhood with what looks like baggage from a trip to a far away city. She obviously takes care of her appearance and looks classy.

It’d be easy to confuse her for a traveller, yet she never seems to leave the neighbourhood. Instead along with the homeless and many elderly, she spends a lot of her time trying to find something of value in the street rubbish bins. Most of the time, she’s like a ghost that stays unnoticed. A single strand not intertwined with anything in this city…

Posted in L'autre bout du monde, Life at August 20th, 2013. No Comments.



Posted in L'autre bout du monde, Life at July 30th, 2013. No Comments.