August 31, 2004

Tricycle


tricycle

Hometown Tour: Berkley
Taken with Great Wall DF-

Posted by Gayla at 07:16 PM | Comments (5)

August 30, 2004

Hometown Tour: Lakeside Park Carousel II


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Hometown Tour: Lakeside Park Carousel
Taken with Horizon 202

I couldn't decide which was better so I put both up.

Posted by Gayla at 12:39 PM | Comments (5)

August 28, 2004

Hometown Tour: Lakeside Park Carousel


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Hometown Tour: Lakeside Park Carousel
Taken with Horizon 202

I can't believe it's still only a mere 10 cents to ride this thing. How do they keep this thing operating at that cost?

I got some disturbing news this morning which has left me feeling more confused about my father's death but has also heightened that strong sense of relief that I'm here, I'm alive and it is really good even though it could have been something very different in a bad way. I think what I'm trying to say in a backwards way is that I'm proud of myself and my choices. And I am grateful that I can wake up everyday with the certainty that I will make mistakes but I will also continue to make good choices. But please universe can I just get this fucking book done without anymore disturbing news to shake me up? Thank you.

Posted by Gayla at 05:58 PM | Comments (5)

August 27, 2004

Hometown Tour: Lakeside Park Snackbar


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Hometown Tour: Lakeside Park
Taken with Holga


"Lakeside Park
Willows in the breeze
Lakeside Park
So many memories
Laughing rides
Midway lights
Shining stars on summer nights
"
-RUSH*

Yes people. THAT Lakeside Park. I'm pretty sure this snackbar was there in Neil Peart's day cause it sure as shit was in mine. I actually started drawing a comic version of this song when I was 18 but I didn't finish. I did the part about gathering on the 24th of May.... and you know, drinking a two-four of Labbatt's in the sand with your buddies... baseball caps high on the head... no shirt, farmer's tan, playing Frisbee, super-tight jeans with a comb in the back pocket. My brother and I looked for those guys but we didn't see any. So I suppose some things have changed.

*This one's for Bob whom I've heard loves his Rush.

Posted by Gayla at 02:55 PM | Comments (5)

August 26, 2004

Purple Tomatillos


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Tomatillo
Taken with Nikon D70


The raccoons got my entire blue jade corn crop. They destroyed the plants as well ensuring that there will be no blue corn this year. Bitches! I actually shed a few tears over the loss. Heartbreaking. Although perhaps not as heartbreaking as all the human fuckers who have trampled and destroyed entire sections of my garden this year. I curse you! Find somewhere else to take a late-night-stumbling-drunk-pee.

In one night of mayhem the raccoons also ate my burgundy okra (thankfully the plants are fine and new okras are forming) and some unripe tomatoes. But they didn't get my tomatillos. Ha! Here's a bowl full.

Posted by Gayla at 08:37 PM | Comments (16)

Hometown Tour: 62


62

Hometown Tour: 62
Taken with Great Wall DF-

I place no stake in numerology, astrology and other similar type stuff because fundamentally I do not believe in the concept of fate or destiny. However, I have noticed that the number 62 has come up frequently in my life. I've known three different people who have all lived at a #62 house. Can't say my stay at this #62 was a pleasant one but it certainly had an impact.

Posted by Gayla at 01:09 PM | Comments (1)

August 25, 2004

Hometown Tour: King Donuts


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Hometown Tour: King Donuts
Taken with Great Wall DF-

When I was a kid, St. Catharines was in the Guiness Book of Records for having the most donut shops per capita. I believe Hamilton or Burlington (or both) also held this record at one point. There were five donut shops within walking distance of my house alone. My step-father had a rather large donut shop addiction. He didn't really eat the donuts, but he couldn't get enough of going there to drink shitty coffee and smoke Players Light Regular TM. I spent so much of my youth sitting in donut shops drinking hot chocolate and sucking back second-hand smoke that I made a site dedicated to donut culture. I took it down when things got out-of-hand.

The donut shop shown above is gone but they left the sign up in back. King Donuts was one of our locals but we didn't go there often. It was your typical donut shop with a twist. They had found a way to mesh two favourite local activities, drinking coffee and drinking booze by putting a donut shop in front and a bar in back. Kind of like a mullet really; business up front, party in the back. As we sat at the booth in the donut shop front I made every effort to see what was going on back there. It was probably empty, but my childhood mind concocted all kinds of possible ellicit and illegal activities.

Posted by Gayla at 01:23 PM | Comments (5)

August 23, 2004

The Spaceship Park


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Spaceship Park (1995)
Taken with Canon AE-1

See image #2

This is another set of images from 1995 but these were taken in St. Catharines. This park was my absolute favourite from childhood. Its unofficial name was "The Spaceship Park" commonly used in the sentence, "Please, can we go to The Spaceship Park?" The park's official name was Lester B. Pearson Park. When I was a kid I thought it said Leslie B. Pearson and that this person was a woman. However, Lester B. Pearson is a former politician, and a male.

As a kid I seemed to be big on routine. I had a very specific routine for The Spaceship Park. First the swings, then over to the merry-go-round, followed by the slide, the bouncy rockets and the rocket swings. I would go on the Enterprise last but always the slides first and the cockpit second. Then I would slide down the pole and done. Although around grade 4 I discovered a goldmine of four-leaf clovers on the grounds of the park and that threw my whole routine out the window. Trips to the park became trips to locate four and five leaf clovers in the grass. Then I'd go home and laminate them between pieces of scotch tape. BIG GEEK.

Anyways The Spaceship Park ruled my world so in university I went back and took a few rolls of photos: one colour (they're kicking around somewhere), and one black & white (grainy, pushed again) for my non-silver class. This close-up photo was the one I printed most.

A few years ago I had a dream about the park. I dreamt that the park was still there and they had added other rides that were similar but painted different colours. The park had become a museum of discarded metal park rides. The rocket slide had been removed and put back upside down. There was also a giant airplane that swung like a pendulum and a yellow, clear plastic train that zipped up. I didn't want to go inside because there was no air. I have never determined what the hell my subconcious was trying to tell me with that one.

My brother and I drove by this park in a cab during Hometown Tour 2004 but the rides have all been replaced by shitty new-school "safe", "soft" rides. Future generations will no longer have the opportunity to smell that rotten piss smell around and inside the Enterprise, bash their heads against hard metal or get bits of gravel stuck in open wounds. Suckers.


Posted by Gayla at 10:40 PM | Comments (5)

August 22, 2004

C.N.E 1995


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Canadian National Exhibition (1995)
Taken with Canon AE-1

See another CNE picture from 1995.


Last night I got the idea to go through a stack of old 35mm film from 1995 to see if I had anything salvagable in there. I found a roll taken at the C.N.E. one afternoon. I only had one roll of film and got in free because they used to have a "free admission before noon on Tuesdays" deal. So I went and shot one roll of film and then left. I was a poor student and couldn't afford to purchase even one more lousy roll.

At the time I was taking non-silver photography. My film is very grainy because it was HP5 film pushed in-camera. The intention was to produce massive grain for non-silver printing. Anyway, it's strange because I remember printing some of these images in the darkroom but have little to no memory of actually taking the pictures. I remember going to the C.N.E and leaving when I ran out of film but don't really remember the taking of the pictures.

I see some similarities in style but really only in a few rolls taken in those years during University. Most of it looks like it could have been taken by someone else entirely. That makes sense because I was so uncomfortable and intimidated by photography as a whole back then. My process was much like writing is for me now.... slowly pulling teeth. I notice that in a lot of projects I kept pushing a certain aesthetic that I wouldn't dream of bothering with now.... something forced that definitely did not work. I have contemplated just shredding that film but fuck, I don't know if I can, even though it's a load of crap that I'll never use...

Posted by Gayla at 11:02 PM | Comments (2)

August 21, 2004

C.N.E. 2004


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Canadian National Exhibition
Taken with Nikon D70

Another August, another trip to the C.N.E. Unfortunately I had work to do and stuck around too long, leaving just as the rain started to drizzle. It never did rain just got really cold and grey. My early evening photos are boring (no idea about film shot yet) because of the flat sky but around 8:00 I met up with Zach and Emily and the sky suddenly turned to magic. There was actually a night-time rainbow, something I have never seen or imagined was possible. Then the sky turned to flames and finally dark with ominous clouds as seen in the photo above.

A conversation:

"What's that? Oh wait, do you put the camera on top of that?"
"No that IS the camera."
Ponders for a moment. "I don't get it."
"It's a pinhole camera. It's essentially a box with a hole instead of a lens and there's some film inside. "
"I don't get it."
"It's a camera that doesn't have a lens."
"Huh? So it takes old pictures?"
"Well I'm taking the pictures right now so they're not old. But they do have a distorted, strange look about them."
"Okay cool."

See also C.N.E:

2002: Pocket DV

2003: Pinhole | Bee | Pocket DV | Coffee | Elephant/Hilbilly | Kiddie Ferris Wheel | Cotton Candy Popcorn | Hot Ice Cream Waffles | Bingo

Toy Camera Carny Gallery

See Feel Think Concession Gallery

Posted by Gayla at 05:19 PM | Comments (4)

August 19, 2004

Archie and the Prince


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Archie and the Prince
Taken with Nikon D70

This evening walking back from the Farmer's Market I stopped to photograph a building when from behind me:

"Hey, over here. Take our picture!"
"Sure. What do you think of this?" Shows the image on the screen.
"I like it! We look good."
"What are your names?"
"He's Archie, I'm ___" (I forget. I'm bad with names.)
"Hi. Nice to meet you."
"So I'm the Prince."
"Oh ya? Of what?"
"You know the Princess Diane? Diana? She's still got the yacht. She's still over there. I'm her brother."
"Okay. Well have a nice evening. Bye."

What's interesting is that "The Prince" was very enthusiastic and bubbly but specifically chose a serious pose turned away from the camera. As soon as I turned the camera off he reverted back to excited and bubbly.

Posted by Gayla at 11:42 PM | Comments (10)

Hometown Tour: Towers Plaza


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Hometown Tour: Towers Plaza
Taken with Great Wall DF-

And another from the parking lot.

Posted by Gayla at 12:03 PM | Comments (9)

August 18, 2004

Hometown Tour: Towers Parking Lot


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Hometown Tour: Former Towers/Food City Parking Lot
Taken with Holga


See Also: Cleanup (taken behind Towers/Food City Parking Lot)

Another feature from the geography of my childhood. This parking lot holds a lot of memories for me. I can't possibly tally up the number of times I cut through it on the way to Beckers, Avondale, Towers, Food City, to meet friends, to go to the wine kiosk (underage) to purchase the Blue Jean wine (aka "Moody Blue" I liked the label design because it looked like jeans and reminded me of Degrassi High. Always a sucker for packaging.), to walk to Carleton Public School and later Laura Secord Secondary School, to buy cigarettes (holding a note asking for Players Light Regular, Export A Regular) and a three litre bag of milk for my parents... I can't recall how many times I rode in or pushed a friend in an abandoned cart through the lot.

And it really hasn't changed much at all. Well the scenery has changed and the stores have changed but the lot itself is the same, perhaps a little worse for wear. They haven't painted fresh lines or fixed the cracks since I was a kid and the seagulls still congregate in droves.

PlaceTime

------------------------------------------------

Today I finished writing my first book.

Posted by Gayla at 11:26 PM | Comments (3)

Hometown Tour: Cleanup


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Hometown Tour: Cleanup
Taken with Horizon 202

Oh man I fucked up big! I chose an important trip to screw around with the filters that came with the Horizon. It was SUPER sunny and I was worried about my photos being overexposed. Instead I've got a bunch of underexposed images. Probably not all four rolls because I did take the filter out at times.

Still all that "Fuck you St. Catharines!" business is totally out the window. Before I got my film back I explained some of the shots I took to Mr. Risk and he asked "Did you take any 360 degree images?" NO, I did not! Damn. Now I have to go back.

The picture above was taken behind the former TOWERS parking lot. I walked that path many, many times.

Posted by Gayla at 10:52 AM | Comments (3)

Hometown Tour: The Box


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Hometown Tour: The Box
Taken with Great Wall DF-

This is the same box seen in this photo and shot from the same side facing the same direction but some twenty years later.

There are many similar boxes around the complex (I photographed a number of them too), but this box was Our Box located just beyond our back door. Oh the memories.

Posted by Gayla at 01:30 AM | Comments (10)

August 17, 2004

Hometown Tour: The Trees


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Hometown Tour: Jay at the trees
Taken with Great Wall DF-

I'm starting to go through a pile of photos taken the other weekend in St. Catharines. It will be interesting to see how many photos work as photos and how many are of interest only to me because of the location and content.

The photo above was taken on the lawn in our old subdivision. The trees were much smaller when we were kids. This site was often used for forced family portraits so when I saw my brother laying there in front of the same trees deep in thought, I saw it as a chance to take a more honest portrait that reflects his real feelings about the place.

Posted by Gayla at 07:10 PM | Comments (8)

August 16, 2004

At the Park


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Nigella
Taken with Nikon D70

I rode over to High Park on my bike earlier this evening to take some photos of plants and get some exercise. It was nice to be in the good air. The flower above is Nigella (not sure which species this one is) also known as love-in-a-mist or devil-in-the-bush. I can't help but think that sounds a little dirty but it was probably meant to be scary.

I got stung bad on the leg by stinging nettle. I know where it is in the park and make a point to watch for it but a piece managed to brush against my leg ever-so-lightly. That's all it takes. I'm very sensitive to it. It still hurts hours later. I think stinging nettle is a great medicinal plant but damn it hurts like a bitch.

Posted by Gayla at 10:50 PM | Comments (12)

Random Pictures on a Monday


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Chicory|Cart|Sidewalk
Taken with Nikon D-70

A few more random pictures taken on the same day. The day we walked and walked and walked.

Rasta Bike | Looks Like India 2 (See 1)

-----------------------------------------

Jim Munroe is revealing his new novel An Opening Act of Unspeakable Evil one blog entry at a time. The book itself is also available for purchase both online and off.

Posted by Gayla at 10:40 AM | Comments (1)

August 15, 2004

Mid-August Already


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Ice Cream
Taken with Great Wall DF-

I can't believe it's already mid August. This has been one shitty summer. I'm harvesting tomatoes and tomatillos with a feeling of disbelief. When the cicadas started up with their annual buzz I could hardly believe my ears. I just can't believe this is it already. It never really began and soon it will end. Last year around this time I saw carnivorous plants in the wild. That was such a thrill for me. I REALLY want to go back there with the good cameras before the summer ends.

And soon the C.N.E. I can never get enough photos of carnivals. See "Concessions" and "Carny".

Posted by Gayla at 01:54 PM | Comments (3)

August 13, 2004

The End of An Era


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Petting Zoo
Taken with Zero 2000 Pinhole

It's the end of an era. A month ago we decided to find out what life is like without 200 channels. Today they come to pick up the digital cable box and disconnect basic cable.

Goodbye Documentary Channel. Goodbye "Six Feet Under". Goodbye "Dead like Me". And as much as I love them I'm definitely better off without all those crappy reality shows on MTV.

Posted by Gayla at 02:26 PM | Comments (9)

Sidewalk


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Sidewalk/Sun/Ice
Taken with Lubitel 166U

The camera back popped open right after I took the shot.

PhotoFriday: Tranquility

Posted by Gayla at 01:26 AM | Comments (8)

August 11, 2004

The Hobby Shop


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Freezee
Taken with Nikon D-70 with close-up filter

One of the better memories from this weekend is of our visit to The Hobby Shop. The Hobby Shop is a St. Catharines staple that has always had a fond place in my heart. If you press your hand against the hand on the window a hobby train moves around the track.

One side of the shop is filled with model cars, rocket kits and model scale stuff. I bought a bunch of models to photograph including the one pictured above.

The other side of the shop is filled with crafty shit and dollhouse miniatures. When I was a kid I spent hours looking at the miniatures. I was obsessed with tiny food packages, little lamps that lit up or other replicas that really worked. I still have a thing for both. They actually had amazing miniature 70's era Fisher Price packages the other day but at 10 bucks a pop I thought better than to buy them. I collect Fisher Price Little People and Adventure People Kits from that era. I also collect Huskies and Chunkies.

One Xmas I got a balsa wood dollhouse kit. It was unbuilt and after months of waiting for someone to put it together I decided to do it myself. It was quite a tricky feat because the entire thing was held together with glue and small nails. It certainly wasn't a beginner project for kids. Soon after, when the shape was built without much detailing applied, my brother got pissed at me for something and smashed it to bits with a hammer.

Posted by Gayla at 04:16 PM | Comments (4)

Orange Blocks


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Orange
Taken with Horizon 202

Posted by Gayla at 10:46 AM | Comments (2)

August 10, 2004

Didn't Intend to Write So Much


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Marsh
Taken with Horizon 202

Just a warning. This entry is about going to see my dead father's body.


Crap. I was in the middle of a long entry about St. Catharines but we had a series of brownouts and it was lost before I saved.

To sum it up. St. Catharines. Couldn't get bikes. Visited childhood neighbourhood. Stayed a long time, walked around. Took pictures. Remembered. Walked to see our father's dead body during the magic hour when the sky was golden. Fear. Went inside.

Television and film had put ideas in my head about what the viewing would be like. I expected a quiet space for contemplation. I expected sombre music and chairs set up for sitting and feeling. I expected to be able to go into the room by myself or with my brother only. I expected a slow procession past the coffin at the very least.

Instead it was loud. So loud. So many people. So much visual and auditory noise. I felt assaulted by it. So many prying eyes looking at us. We stood out because we had spent the day walking around and were tanned and sweaty. We were wearing normal clothes. I had on a sunhat and carried a camera. My brother carried my camera bag. When I did look at faces all I saw was a blank sort of pity. For what? We left. We left him, we left them. They've never acknowledged what we went through with that man, their brother, their son, their kin, the man all that repression and self-loathing created. So what do they pity exactly?

The room was filled with people, the lights were bright. It felt like a cocktail meet-n-greet at a conference but instead of a buffet there was a dead body in a coffin. People stood around chatting with our father's dead body on display behind them.

Is this common? From my perspective it was fucked up and very unhealthy. There was no space for emotion and contemplation; mental or physical.

Seeing his body was not what I expected either. It didn't look like him. My brother kept coaching me "Look at his hands. Look at his hands." But I couldn't see him. The man I knew wasn't there in front of me. This was another man. Older and larger. His sickness, the way he abused himself was all over him despite the flowers and the suit. His hands looked so flat. The whole scene was so overwhelming. I felt sick. As I stared at his body trying to see him in there, trying to confront this thing that was not really him I halluncinated that he moved. Everything swirled. It was too much. I'd had enough.

As we left an uncle approached us and started talking. I just wanted to get out of there but had slipped into this passive state where I was coherant of everything happening but couldn't respond in the way I wanted to.

But then the words "It's amazing. At least 200 people showed up. His buddies from work..... something something.... people liked him.... he was well liked...." (I'm paraphrasing of course).

That snapped me. I was back in my body again.

I put up my hand as if to shield my face from his words. "I don't want to hear about what a great guy he was. I don't care. He was the worst to the people he should have treated the best."

After that it was just anger. I was already across the parking lot. People stared blankly. Some were familar, some strangers. I kicked the curb hard (but still careful not to hurt myself). I crossed the street. As I crossed the former Towers/Food City parking lot there was rage. So much rage. But I also felt so clear. I threw rocks. I fell to the first patch of grass and tore at it. I yelled and screamed. It was good.

Then my brother and I started talking calmly again. He made many astute observations. I felt so good. So much joy. I felt detoxified.

We walked the whole way back to our hotel. Far. My ankles killed. I tried taking pictures by holding down the shutter on 'B' but the light was nearly gone. Partway back we came upon a pedestrian tunnel that went underneath the highway. Once we got halfway through we started yelling and screaming at the top of our lungs. That was great. I sat on the curb of an Avondale changing film while my brother was inside stocking up on bottled water. We were so thirsty. Some guy in an SUV yelled "Smile" and held up a digital camera. I wanted to say "Fuck off I just saw my dead father's body." but held my arms over my face and yelled "No" instead. As we approached our hotel we saw that "SUPERSIZE ME" was playing in 15 minutes at the theatre so we went. Strange but kind of fitting.

We did not go to the funeral. There was no point. How could I possibly sit through more stories about what a great guy he was? ...in the pews of the church I left so many years ago.... Eating white bread sandwiches made by the Woman's Auxillary in the downstairs kitchen... Why would I do that to myself? Should I have tried to stand up and make them understand? Should I have said, "He did not love us. He looked through us. We were not people. We were not his children. We were objects. He wanted to control us. He wanted to own us. He tried to destroy us."?

There was no point. They won't understand and I don't care anymore if they do. I feel different and that's the difference. I don't need to seek my justice from them anymore. I am not destroyed. I'm happy. Angry, but happy. And so it goes.

Posted by Gayla at 03:40 PM | Comments (11)

August 09, 2004

Joy


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On the Ferry
Taken with Nikon D70

Fuck you St. Catharines. I am done with you.

Posted by Gayla at 11:40 PM | Comments (1)

August 07, 2004

Just a Little Distraction


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A Park
Taken with Holga

Someone had a plant delivered to me anonymously. I don't know if it is for my birthday or the death.

-------------------------------------

My brother and I are finally going to do Hometown Tour 2004 this weekend. I need to decide which cameras to bring. I can normally make this choice fairly easily but I've put a lot into this trip. It's going to be really heavy emotionally, especially now with the funeral (which I may or may not attend). I'm expecting to take some photos that will be really important to me. I don't want to find myself thinking "Shit, I should have brought the ______."

I'm not going to bring the digital. I don't think it suits the occassion. Unfortunately that means no instant gratification. Unless I bring the SX-70 camera or a Polaroid Land. Instead I've been struggling with choices like:

Mamiya VS Great Wall?

Diana/Windsor VS Holga VS Spartus?

The Mamiya is so heavy. I don't think I've got a lot of choice there. With the toy cameras I always reach for the Diana/Windsor first but am finding myself shifting to the Holga. The one obvious advantage it has is that I can attach a flash for indoor shots.

Well one thing I am certain of is that obsessing about cameras is a nice distraction from the griping fear I have about this trip.


p.s. Check out Chris' photo of what I'm assumming is the Welland Canal. I'll be there this weekend.

Posted by Gayla at 11:53 AM | Comments (5)

August 06, 2004

CHIN Monster


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CHIN - Monster
Taken with Horizon 202

Posted by Gayla at 06:31 PM | Comments (3)

Feels Like Fall Today


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Creepy Window
Taken with Nikon D-70

We walked clear across town yesterday starting north east and working our way south west. My legs are killing but I took lots of pictures. Can't say I love them all but I enjoyed the act of taking them.

Dealing with this death is fucked. I still can't quite believe this is happening, especially now at this moment when I was literally at the tip of so much change already. Life is so unpredictable. I could not have prepared myself for this. I knew this day would come, he disrespected his body for so long. You can't outlive that stuff forever. So I knew he would die young (he was only 49) and I knew it would effect me in ways I couldn't be prepared for and I knew I would have to open myself up to whatever it was that I felt but even still....

I'm having so many emotions I don't completely understand. I hate not understanding. I always want to intellectualize everything. When someone you love dearly dies it is a confusing time but also quite clear what the emotions are and where they are coming from. Their absence tears you up, you might feel abandoned, you might feel a sense of your own mortality, you might feel a lot of things. But still they are a lot of things that seem to add up to something concrete. I think a lot of my grief is for me because I am not crying for him.

I still don't exactly understand what is happening inside me specifically. But I have worked hard to get myself into a position where I could start to begin the process of forgiveness and I suppose this is a start of that. But it is so fucking confusing and messy. I made an interesting Freudian slip yesterday morning right after I found out and said something like "I can't believe I'm dead." When I meant to say "I can't believe he's dead." I am the queen of these kinds of slips. This is not a resolution. That doesn't happen so quickly and I don't expect that. But it is an end to something. Or at least a really big shift I didn't see coming.

And despite all this mess I can't help but step aside from it and marvel about the strangeness and complexity of life. And I'm really glad that I feel all of this even if I simultaneously hate it.

I made a joke to my agent/producer that once I finish this gardening book, my next project will be a Made-For-TV movie cause I've got all the right ingredients for it. Can't stop the sarcasm.

Posted by Gayla at 03:04 PM | Comments (9)

August 05, 2004

A Change


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The Thing On the Lawn
Taken with Great Wall DF-

The man who was not my biological father but who acted as my father for the bulk of my childhood died. I have turned off comments. Please do not offer me condolences or sympathy. I did not like the man. I did not love him. My emotions are high but they're not the kind of emotions you feel when someone you love dearly and who has enriched your life is gone. There is going to be a lot of anger. There is going to be a lot of other emotion I'm not aware of yet but can feel like a ball in my gut. Fuck.

It's so strange because I was going to post here today about changing my surname. My last name is his last name. It was not the name on my birth certificate. My name was changed at age four when my mother married him.

For years I have struggled with what to do about my name. Should I take back my birth name? My birth name is my grandmother's name. She gave it to my mother who gave it to me. So much in my life seems to get passed down matrilineally. I don't mean that in the best possible way either.

But I'd been hesitant about taking that name back. And I thought about coming up with a completely new name that was just mine and didn't have ties to anyone. But I couldn't think of anything. A surname always refers to something. How do you make a name when you have nothing to reference?

I am 90% certain that I am going to take my birth name back. Which is very strange because I think I'll be the only one left alive with it. Changing a name is such a big deal. It's such a monumental decision.

So much all at once.

Posted by Gayla at 01:03 PM

August 04, 2004

India Centre


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India Centre
Taken with Nikon D70

My book publisher is American so I've been writing The Book with American spellings. It's really starting to mess my head up. I noticed that I named todays photo "center" rather than the Canadian "centre". Nooooooooo.

When I was a kid I was sent twice to a scary bible camp in New York State. After only a week I came back with a heavy accent that took a few days to fade.

Posted by Gayla at 12:08 PM | Comments (8)

August 03, 2004

Five Years

5 years.

Posted by Gayla at 04:42 PM

Sideways Glance


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Sideways Glance
Taken with Nikon D70

I take a lot more people photos with the Nikon digital. It's faster. Mind you they are mostly of Mr. Risk or my brother. I still feel weird about taking photos of other people -- friends even.

----------------------------------------

I'm so closed to finishing the writing of this book I can taste it! Must get back to it.

Posted by Gayla at 10:42 AM | Comments (9)

August 01, 2004

Mini Putt


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Mini Putt
Taken with Nikon D70

These were taken yesterday on my birthday. We went biking, picture-taking and exploring on Ward's Island. It was cloudy and grey for long stretches throughout the day but it didn't rain! These photos were taken on a short jaunt over to Centre Island to take a look at the craptastic scenery and old rides at Centreville

Posted by Gayla at 01:00 PM | Comments (9)