Friday, 31 December 2004

Gig 63: Death from Kathedral

Death From Above 1979 / Controller.Controller / Aids Wolf @ The Kathedral / All Ages

When I arrived at the venue, the queue was already turned onto Bathurst, I said hello to a few of my friends at the intersection then went to the back to find my other friends. There were quite a few number of kids. As we entered the venue, the kids were crowded up by the stage and merch area. First off was Aids Wolf, from Montréal, loud experimental band with high energy and lots of screaming. Second band of the evening was Controller.Controller and they were AWESOME! I danced and danced during their set. The venue started to get packed, by the time DFA came on stage, the dodgy little venue was completely packed, bodies against bodies, the anticipated kids began to rock out and mosh. The bnad mostly played from the new album, but also a few favourites from previous EPs. Sebastien gave a "Billy Talent" speech during the set and told how they enjoyed playing to the younger crowd. During the short encore, Sebastien invited two fans to come on stage to jam with them. Those two had their best time of their lives they said. DFA's sound had rounded out since i've first saw them couple years ago, nevertheless still very rocking live!

Thursday, 30 December 2004

RIP: Jerry Orbach aka Lenny Briscoe

Jerry Orbach reportedly died Tuesday night in Manhattan after several weeks battling with prostate cancer at 69. He was diagnosed with the illness when he already had begun production on the new spinoff "Law & Order: Trial by Jury" and it's expected that Lenny Briscoe shall appear in the beginning few episode starting to be aired early next year. His other work included voice over as Lumier in "Beauty & The Beast", broadway musicals and roles in "Dirty Dancing". He was my favourite character from Law & Order. Lenny Briscoe, you shall be missed, oh, Jerry too!

Wednesday, 29 December 2004

New Year's Resolutions

Why do people make them when they don't follow them anyway? I make them to keep me sane throughout the year, i do honestly try to work on them except for one last year (lateness). So that particular one would get carried over to this year's list. I love making lists, maybe i should become a virgo! Nah..

1. Be on time (hmm.. this seems to be the one keeps recurring years after years)
2. Be better at writing & read more.
3. Keep being better at my finances.
4. Be motivated and inspired. Stop being lazy. Stop delaying lauching the site and line. Competition is calling! and be better with the couture clients.
5. Keeping up my French and Swedish.
6. Lose 5-10 lbs. Eat more healthily.
7. Be more patience to my mother and to people who annoys me.

Saturday, 25 December 2004

Cooking: Caramel Apple

Makes 1
   1  granny smith apple
   1  wooden stick (icepop stick or use twig for a creative twist)
1/8  cup chopped toasted nuts
       (optional - butter pecan, walnuts hazelnuts, almonds)
1/8  cup turbinado sugar
1/2  cup granulated sugar
1/8  cup dark corn syrup
1/2  cup heavy cream
   1  tbsp unsalted butter
The How to:
1. Insert wooden stick into the top of apple. Place turbinado sugar,
nuts in 2 small separate bowls.

2. Place granulated sugar, corn syrup, cream and butter in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue cooking until temperature registers 245° F on a candy thermoneter, about 10 mins.
3. Fill a large bowl with ice water. Remove saucepan from heat and briefly plunge into ice water to stop the cooking process. Do not over cool or camarel might harden.
4. Dip apple into caramel, coat the top and sides using a spoon,
and roll the bottom in turbinado sugar, then the nuts.

5. Transfer to a serving platter. Keep cool in the fridge until serving.

The Presentation:
1. Let Caramel Apple sit at room temperature for 15 mins before serving.
2. Slice apple into small thin wedges.
3. Place a few wedges in a small serving dish, with a scoop of Greg's Honey Vanilla ice cream (Greg's Ice Cream: 750 Spadina Ave. Toronto. 416.962.4734). Sprinkle chopped nuts on top.

    The Twist:
  • You can also keep it plain or just dip into nuts. A more fancy idea is also to dip into melted chocolate after caramelizing apple. If you want to go all out, then after the chocolate dipping, dip into nuts.
  • Add small broken twig of cinnamon on top of the caramel apple. Or sprinkle a pinch of ground cinnamon, nutmeg or cardomen into caramel before dipping.
  • Use a twig instead of a icepop stick.
  • You can use the same method to caramel pears.
  • Recommand to use dark corn syrup, the molasses helps to create a deeper amber colour to the caramel.

Friday, 24 December 2004

Film: It's a Wonderful Life

*** USA. 130 min. BW 1946. Directed by Frank Capra.
Written by: Philip Van Doren Stern & Frances Goodrich.

Cast: James Stewart & Donna Reed.

19:00 @ Bloor Cinema (Free Screening for Members) with Amy.

Yes, another long film but this one is very warmhearted. It's a Dickens-esque story about an guardian angel helping a compassionate but despairingly frustrated George Bailey by showing him what his life would be like if he has never existed. I loved all the women's dresses in the film, there's just something poetic and graceful about women in the late 40's and early 50's. I love the part in the beginning of the film where the kid Georgie bends down in front of the kid Mary Hatch, she whispered into his deaf ear (caused by saving his lil brother Harry from drowning in the icy pond) and said "George Bailey - I'll love you til the day I die."

I might not believe in Santa Claus. However, I definitely believe in Guardian Angels.

Rocking Santa.
Ryan gave me a lift today to work, whilst we were driving on Kingston Road, i spotted this gas station with Full Service at 67.9, we decided to turn around and get gas when we saw this Santa pumping at the station. What so emo about the Santa is that first of all, he's ethnic, he was wearing the Santa suit, but with no Santa hat, he had a goatee and ponytail! ABSOLUTE GOLD!!

Good Times with Good Cake, Good Tunes.
After the film at Bloor Cinema, Amy finally took me to this Korean place she's been raving about for 2 years. I had the Combination Soo Tofu Soup (Beef, Shrimp and Clams). Was tasty, loved their side dishes though the Kim-Chi was WAY to spicy for me! Then we scooted over to Labyrinth for MattBlair's weekly DJing at Vanishing Point. He played the songs i've requested earlier today. Kudos to Matt! Amy bought chamomile tea (ick) and a black forest cake to share. I couldn't believe the prices of the drinks there! $2.50 only with basic mixed drink (gin, vodka, rum, whiskey.. etc) and all domestic beer. Matt spun a good hour of good tunes started with my requested of Doves (There Goes the Fear), then he played Le Tigre (Decepticon), The Streets, Ladytron's Playgirl mixed into West End Boys by Pet Shop Boys, followed by Bizzare Love Triangle to Saint Etienne's Only Love Can Break Your Heart, Charlatans, Stone Roses and too many good tunes. Amy and I wanted to dance. She reckons Matt kicks Blow Up's arses and that he should take over BU once it's close in January (pretty sad). We left 'round 1:10am to realized Amy forgot her umbrella, went back it wasnt' there, she musta left it in the Korean restaurant.

Toronto is an ice rink right now.
Luckily, i caught the last bus. Was home fairly quickly. All pavement and walkways are frozen. I could literally skate home from the bus stop. No kidding. As i went into my building i started talking to the security guard about the "natural ice rink". He informed me that he had complained to the Super about this but the Super didn't gave a toss. So Mr. Security asked if i could filled in a complaint for that matter. (Right up my alley, love sending angry letters!) And then we backstabbed our Super, i inquired about renting out the parking spots, finally got home, couldn't sleep yet excited about sleeping in tomorrow and don't have to work.

Wednesday, 22 December 2004

Film: Un long dimanche de fiançailles (A Very Long Engagement)

***1/2 France/USA. 134 min. 2004. Directed by: Jean-Pierre Jeunet.
Original Novel Written by: Sébastien Japrisot.
Cast: Audrey Tautou, Gaspard Ulliel, Jodie Foster, Ticky Holgado.

19:30 @ Cumberland with Amy.

A Very Long Engagement should be renamed: a very long film; although Jeunet kept the film suspenseful and interesting. It was very strange watching the film, as if i were watching Le Fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (Amélie) time travelled to World War I. Jeunet is a magical storyteller! He has repeated a few familiar faces from Amélie. It was beautifully shot and coloured, only this film is more realistic and believable but isn't as lighthearted as his last. The film tells the story of Mathilde's relentless search for her fiancée, Manech, who has disappeared from the Somme trenches during WWI. The story entangles 4 other missing soldiers and Mathilde's series of investigation to search for the truth if all were dead or alive. I like the ending the most, when she meets Manech (only he's amnesiac) again in his garden, and he said "Doesn't it hurt to walk?" It was the first thing he said to her when they first met as kids. The film left it open whether if they'll be in loved again. The last scene, she sat down beside him whilst he was gold-leaf-ing a wooden chest and narrator ends the film with "She carefully folds her arms on her lap and she looks at him... she looks at him... she looks at him... She looks at him..."

Saturday, 18 December 2004

Gig: 62. Rainbow Quartz's White Vibration

Rainbow Quartz 1st Annual Festive Special:
The High Dials, Frontier Index, Showroom @ The 360

We went back to Casse-Croûte La Banquise for lunch, i had the Poutine Duleton (ground steak with fried onions) this time and i was over the roof. We left town around 2pm. Just before Kingston we caught in a jam for an hour, didn't get back into town til 8pm! I changed and then headed out to meet Amy to go to The 360 for Rainbow Quartz 1st Annual Festive Special with Showroom, Frontier Index and The High Dials. We arrived at 11:40pm, Frontier Index was on stage, they are not bad, high energy performance, there were a few following singing to the words and dancing, most enjoyable when singer/strummer Corey Herden thanks this person for their wardrobe consulting. High Dials finally on stage after midnite. God so tired! They featured 4-5 new songs which sounded excellent. The highlight was during Morning's White Vibration when Trevor Anderson said "when i come back with my guitar, i want to see some other people dancing up here other than this guy!" and of course, the grand highlight of the night is when Rishi Dihr played the sitar!! Highly enjoyable, and dancable gig. After the show, we talked to Trevor, he liked my shirt, i told him thanks for the shirt really because it was a birthday gift from amy asking her ex-boss, Mila who asked Trevor (also great friends with him) so the story all link back together. We left around 2:35am, I missed the bus at Finch by 2 mins, i had to cab home.. eeek!

Gig: 60 & 61. Take the Long Road & Trip It!

Ottawa (15/23/04 - Captial Music Hall):
We left the city around 3pm, major traffic in Oshawa, got into Ottawa by 8:30pm. We were surprised how cheap Ottawa's parking was! Ottawa was freezing! My toes were frozen from waiting for Meghan outside the venue. After we met up with Meghan, we went to the riverside for Beavertails but unfortunately it was closed!! So we messed around at Sugar Mountain, that's when i realised i've lost my black lightning bolt earring but funny that i totally remembered where i dropped it, it was near 9:50pm, we said our byes and went back to the venue. Found my earring, checked off guestlist and went into the venue..

Projet Orange was already on stage playing the last song. They were good performers (saw them the day before in Toronto, but just the music wasn't my cup of tea.) Venue was quite small and it has a balcony.

At 10:10pm, The Music came on. Ren was on Adam's side, Ei & I went over to Stu's side (coz it was empty), poor stu had to deal the entire nite with half dead monitor, dead mic for the drums during Bleeding from Within, he slammed his bass as he left the stage. Rob sounded better tonite than last nite but the band looked exhausted. We got a chance to catch Phil as we were leaving, we asked if Chris was around because we had gift for him to say thanks for guestlisting us for all the shows. He said he was inside could give the stuff to him and give to Chris but we insisted we'd wait til tomorrow to thank him personally.

Casse-Croûte La Banquise has more poutine options you can ever imagine!

Montréal (16-17/12/04) :
So at 12:15am we left Ottawa to Montréal we go. We arrived at Montéal at 2am. We unloaded our luggage and went to Casse-Croûte La Banquise (994 rue Rachel Est - 514.525.2415) for take-out poutine. Ren and I had the Poutine Dan Dan (Pepperoni, Bacon and Sautéed Onions) and Ei & Amy shared the Poutine Classique. It was a total heart attack but it was soooooo good!

The next day, we slept in and went to Frites Alors! for brunch. After we ordered, Amy and I sneaked out to get a birthday present for my client at the cutest shoppe ever on St-Denis & Duluth, Au Festin de Badette (4085 rue St-Denis - 514.849.0214), handmade chocolates & gifts, great selection of gourmet specialty teas, salt de mer, olive oils and pastas... etc. Amy raves about their Hot Chocolate there, we *HAD* to go back! After we ate, i departed from my mates and head onto Sears Canada (3075 Thimens Boulevard) to meet my client. She gave me a grand tour of the building and we went for a coffee. After that i went back to meet up with the girls, as i got off at Mont-Royal, i went for a bit of shopping on my own and bought 2 tees for $10 at Kokawaii (827 rue Mont-Royal Est - 514.522.6252).

Night street of Mont-Royal with Christmas lights.

Met up with the girls back at the flat and we were still full from brunch so we decided to go back to Au Festin de Badette for Hot Chocolate & Croissant instead. When people say chocolate is better than sex, at this shoppe, it's ture!!!! Their café had variaties of teas and coffee, slushes (there's even a dark chocolate slush!), sorbet and hot chocolate. Highly recommended the chocolat chaud de Badette (with cinnamon, cardomen), there's also one with 70% cocao. Their croissant is out of this world, it's buttery, it's flaky, better than our very own Clafouti!

Our Sweet Indulgence at Au Festin de Badette.

After the sweet indulgence, we headed to the venue Club Soda (1225 St-Laurent - 514.286.1010). As we got off the cab, a sculper approached us, we told him we're going to a different gig, he informed us it was cancelled, we thought he was joking. As we walked to the door, there was a sign posted saying the show has been cancelled and rescheduled for a later date! Gah! Disappointment, we walked on St-Laurent and headed back to the flat, rent a film (The Stepford Wives), bought a PC The Decadent Molten Chocolate Cakes, the best thing EVER! At around Midnite, we ventured out to Schwartz's we each bought a smoke meat sandwich, and we walked around St-Laurent, peaked into Bifteck to see if we see any indie rockstars chilling out, didn't see any. They sent me into Le Pistol to check, didn't see anyone neither but there were many hott guys there! Perfect opportunity to wing each other! But we didn't stay, we headed home and finish our movie & sandwiches and called it a night.

Tuesday, 14 December 2004

Survival for the Fittest

Gah! Some girl from San Francisco just called me, first of all, pronouncing my name wrong (my 3rd biggest pet peeve). 2ndly, those idiots are running 2 months ad with the wrong URL (they're really .net and i am .com) Gahh.. i've had this domain more than 7 years!!!!!! She asked if i'm willing to sell my domain too.. i shoulda bought .net too!!

They are in the same line of business (but with a much uglier site), but they're more focus on handbags (which i have as well) she asked me if i would refer the clients to her site since they're practically advertising my site for free for the next 2 months? Or should i take advantage of this and have my on-line store ready?

The Sole Collection: White Pucci-esque Ankle Boots

My latest addition, white leather fold-down ankle boots with Pucci-esque lining. I can't wait to wear these! Hmm.. with a cute mod dress maybe? Tugged in with skinny jeans?

Sunday, 12 December 2004

Film: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

**** USA. 108 min. 2004. Directed by: Michel Gondry.
Written by: Charlie Kaufman. Cast: Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet,
Elijah Wood, Kirsten Dunst.

19:00 @ Innis Town Hall with Nina.
Last nite, i finally got to see Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I liked it. The concept was intriguing: the desire and the power to forget the bad things happened to us permanently, and the consequences that followed. The film clearly explored the character's mindscape. Although, I found it was a bit confusing at times; especially the true version when and where Joel Barish really met Clementine Kruczynski. I would never have a certain person erased from my memory even if the person has treated me badly in the past, because he/she made me who i am today and i wouldn't like to change that.

Moving In...

This is my first public blog. Please be kind. Today has been a complete disaster. Too late for the sample sale, and i walked all the way in the snowy weather too.
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